South Maitland Railways Pty Ltd (SMR) owns and operates a 24.14 kilometre open access private railway from East Greta Junction (EGJ) signal box to Pelton, south west of Cessnock. SMR adjoins the Main Northern Rail (MNR) line at Telarah via an arrival and a departure road. The southern end adjoins track at Cessnock, owned and operated by the Austar Coal Mine. In addition to this, there are various sidings located in the EGJ yard. There are two distinct arms to SMR’s business operation;
The first is the effective management and control of Pacific National coal trains from the MNR to the Austar Coal Mine at Pelton.
The second is the East Greta Junction (EGJ) yard located adjacent to the MNR at Telarah. It consists of the arrival and departure roads, signal box, two yards with sidings and hardstand. Access is also gained through EGJ to the old SMR workshops and yard currently owned by the Hunter Valley Training Company.
Local, national and international firms use EGJ yard to stable and maintain track maintenance machines and repair wagons due to its central location and ease of access to the MNR line.
The track is operated under RISSB standards, and except for arrival and departure roads, is a single line run under a staff and ticket safe working system, mechanical points and lower quadrant signals. It is currently configured to run trains up to 19 tonne axle loads (tal) with maximum speeds of 30 km/hr. The EGJ yards are capable of taking a heavier axle load.
SMR is registered as a Rail Infrastructure Manager (RIM) of a registered private siding. As an owner and user of hi-rail and shunt vehicles on the network, SMR is also accredited as a Rolling Stock Operator (RSO).