Repair, Don’t Waste features in Rail Director February 2023 edition
International Sales and Marketing manager Willian Santos of ABI Electronics was recently interviewed by Rail Director magazine regarding the importance of repair over replacement of electronic circuit boards, specifically in the rail sector. As a founder of the #RepairDontWaste movement, Willian shared great insight into how the industry’s largest players are challenging current trends and embracing electronic repair as a sustainable practise for today and the future.
Rail Director is an industry-leading magazine produced by RBD Media, covering latest news and the views of industry leaders in the UK. The publication is read by over 15,000 sector professionals every month and RBD Media is the UK’s leading online news service for rail. With many industry #RepairHeroes across the globe, we at ‘Repair, Don’t Waste’ are delighted to be featured in such a prestigious magazine to further our message into UK rail.
Willian’s interview highlights the importance of developing in-house capabilities to repair rather than replace electronics, which can bring a multitude of benefits to operators such as increased productivity, decreased spending and challenging obsolescence. Aside from the potential to save the rail industry millions of pounds, Willian explains that using maintenance and repair as a first resort answer to faulty machinery has untold environmental benefits:
“We need to phase out the replace-not-repair mentality, which is an essential step in eliminating waste, lowering emissions, and saving precious resources.”
Repair, Don’t Waste plays host to multiple success stories in the sector; in 2022, VLT Carioca invested in ABI’s specialist test and measurement equipment for their in-house repair lab to ensure they are immune to component obsolescence and machine downtime. With over 65 rail companies using ABI’s technology for trouble shooting PCB’s, hundreds of electronics engineers are fully equipped to repair the millions of circuit boards circulating on train tracks from the U.S to far East Asia. Willian expects increased numbers of rail operators to join the fold, with many of them rapidly awakening to the pressure of sustainability targets and net-zero goals.
Willian states that a common barrier to companies embracing the Repair, Don’t Waste mentality is the lack of education surrounding repair and maintenance of electronics. He says:
“If organisations are serious about sustainability, a practical thing they should be doing is stopping E-waste and working with academia and education organisations to attract and train a new generation of workers to repair.”
Many industries have an increasing demand for repair technicians, but there is a significant lack of workers with the skills required to fill these roles. Repair, Don’t Waste are proud to champion the importance of education and high industry standards of repair, hence we provide resources to those looking for further education and a starting point for their company to invest in repair capabilities.
Willian’s interview is a call to action for the UK rail industry – the status quo cannot continue. Obsolescence of components and scarcity of replacement PCBs mean that simply wasting electronics is no longer feasible. For the UK to lead the way in sustainable practises, repair and maintenance can no longer be consigned to the depths of history – it must be given a new lease of life and prioritised by the industry and education sector alike, for the assured continuation of UK rail.