Iconic Edinburgh Tram Kept Clean by Smith Brothers & Webb's Automated Washing Machine


The iconic new Edinburgh trams are putting on a sparklingly clean public face with their distinctive white, red and platinum livery thanks to the engineering expertise of Smith Brothers & Webb.
The trams, which have attracted 1.5 million passengers in their first 100 days of running this summer, have to be washed every day to make sure they are in tip top condition for tourists and commuters alike.
With the eyes of the world on the new transport system for Scotland’s capital city, it is important that the trams project a professional image at all times as they ply back and forth from the heart of the city’s New Town to Edinburgh Airport.
The essential washing is done at night as the trams run on a busy schedule, with a tram running every seven and a half minutes during peak times and every 10 minutes at off-peak times.
The wash system needs to be robust, reliable and effective – and Smith Brothers & Webb rose to that challenge by installing one of its Britannia range of automated washing systems at the Edinburgh Tram depot at Gogar near the airport.
Andy Barracliffe, Director of Britannia Washing Systems, said: “For tourists arriving at Edinburgh Airport the trams will be their first experience of public transport in Scotland so it is vital that they look clean and inviting.
“Commuters and Edinburgh people too want to see vehicles that look attractive, modern and well maintained and we are delighted here at Smith Brothers & Webb to be able to help the trams look pristine.
“Our Britannia brand of bespoke automated tram and train washing machines is renowned around the world for its unsurpassed wash quality, longevity and reliability – it is just the ticket for the Edinburgh Tram.”
Smith Brothers & Webb has been manufacturing automated washing machines for trains, buses, coaches and commercial vehicles for decades and has over 1900 installations worldwide, the majority of which are in the UK.  All of its machines are designed and manufactured in the UK at its premises in Alcester, Warwickshire.
To reduce costs and improve its customers’ environmental credentials, Smith Brothers & Webb supplies water reclamation systems that are capable of recycling up to 90% of the water used in its washing machines. The Edinburgh Tram has a full reclaim system.
The company also makes an ‘airline style’ Contained Effluent Transfer system that can empty effluent tanks on trains with modern toilets three times faster than conventional models. Its first such installation has taken place in Hong Kong.

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