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15 July 2019

Questions to answer about overcrowding on Warrnambool Line

Member for South West Coast Roma Britnell says there are some questions that must be answered after another V/Line Warrnambool service didn’t have enough seats for all passengers.

Just days after V/Line apologised for running a three carriage train to Warrnambool last Sunday, rather than the normal five and forcing people to stand or sit on the floor for much of the journey – the same thing happened again yesterday.

The train was again only three carriages and passengers were again forced to sit on the floor or stand in the aisles for much the trip.

Ms Britnell said it was not good enough, especially on the final weekend of the school holidays when the service could be expected to be busy.

“Last week V/Line said it was an unexpected carriage fault that caused the shortfall on the service. If it’s the same thing again this week there needs to be some serious questions asked about the capability of the rolling stock being used on the Warrnambool Line and V/Line’s ability to plan ahead,” she said.

“The Mayor of the Glenelg Shire Anita Rank was on the train and said country passengers are treated like second class citizens – forced to sit on the floor.

“Last week the CEO of V/Line said the trains used on the Warrnambool line would be in service until at least 2025. If we are seeing these sorts of continual breakdowns now, imagine what type of delays we will be dealing with over the next five years as the carriages get older.”

Ms Britnell said in 2017 Daniel Andrews said works to upgrade the line would begin in 2018 and would be completed 12-18 months later and would allow for modern V/locity trains to run on the line.

“That work still hasn’t started and documents leaked to the Liberal Nationals earlier this year showed the government has taken the cheap option and won’t upgrade the line to allow for V/Locity’s past Geelong. ” she said.

“The Government has over promised on its Warrnambool line upgrade and it’s passengers who are left to deal with the lack of action.”