Bring on the Bowser!

13 June 2017

Bring on the Bowser!


TBM Rail has been supporting train and other transport fleet operators to service and overhaul passenger toilet systems for nearly a decade. Now there’s additional flexibility, with a mobile trailer-mounted “Bowser” pumping unit that can reach parts of the UK others can’t…

A Bowser is a storage tanker, and, where toilet waste is involved, being able to dispose of it quickly, efficiently, safely and legally is often a problem for operators. We can help!

From the TBM Rail base in Cheshire, to the many rail and coach depots across the country, our skilled technicians have repaired and thoroughly cleaned toilet piping, tanks and systems for many years. This has been done on all train and coach units, and for a range of diverse toilet systems – in particular, CET toilets (Controlled Emission Toilets).

Such vital servicing has helped to keep train and bus fleets in action, thus serving passengers at peak times when the toilets and washrooms are needed most.

One issue that has always cropped up is the access to fleet depots. For convenience, staff journey times and ease of storage, trains and buses are often parked up at numerous locations. These are easier to access for shift personnel and other light-duty cleaning services. However, only the main depots, complete with larger teams and higher-specification equipment, can complete all essential operations – on time, and on demand.

Sometimes, toilets systems can be left out of action because of time constraints, and because safe and thorough clean/empty services cannot be accessed.

TBM Rail’s Bowser solution addresses these issues. We can get our trailer unit to all UK depots (large and small), wherever they are, when needed. We clean, service and empty – job done, meaning that fleets are back in action quickly, ready for the next passenger journeys.

The flexible disposal and storage solution for train, bus and coach toilet waste is easy to handle and can be taken to any location with standard vehicle access. Here are some of the technical details:

  • Chassis-mounted, tandem axle for increased stability
  • Tank capacity – 300 gallons
  • Length 4.3m, width 1.8m, height 1.8m – can be taken almost anywhere
  • Fitted with air-cooled petrol engine 
  • 12-volt battery and a 2600 vacuum pressure pump  
  • Engine & vacuum pump covered by steel cabinet
  • Substantial hose lengths

Such units can be difficult and costly to operate, but TBM Rail offers train operators a flexible solution that can help keep rolling stock in use when it’s required. Our trained staff leave depot employees free to complete other scheduled duties. We complete the waste disposal task quickly and efficiently when operators need toilet tanks emptied.

Removing the waste is all part of the deal. TBM Rail is fully licenced with the Environment Agency to safely extract and dispose of any waste products.

The clock is ticking, as by 2020 all train operators much have CET toilet systems on board their passenger services. TBM Rail’s Bowser is the perfect solution to empty tanks to enable rail and bus firms to maintain operations from existing depots, without having to move stock around.

Call TBM Rail for more details about our “Bowser” services on 0844-800 8577.

News & events

  • Cost-effective passenger comfortMORE
  • Clean, efficient train fuel tanks MORE
  • Doors sensors that last, and last… MORE
  • Testing fabric protection solutionsMORE