V/Line restricting speeds on Bendigo line to reduce damage to trains, tracks

 

News article: V/Line restricting speeds on Bendigo line to reduce damage to trains, tracks

V/LINE will be completing track resurfacing works on the Bendigo line this weekend after investigations identified a number of mud holes under some sections of the track.

  8077 Chief Train Controller

Location: Crossing the Rubicon
What is the cycle time for rail maintenance on the Bendigo line?

Are Vline actually holding the maintenance cycles?

V/Line restricting speeds on Bendigo line to reduce damage to trains, tracks

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  Valvegear Dr Beeching

Location: Norda Fittazroy
The speed restriction is a lot cheaper than actually doing some sensible maintenance work.

Yet another example of how the V Line hierarchy does not have a clue about the nuts and bolts workings of a railway system.
  speedemon08 Mary

Location: I think by now you should have figured it out
The speed restriction is a lot cheaper than actually doing some sensible maintenance work.

Yet another example of how the V Line hierarchy does not have a clue about the nuts and bolts workings of a railway system.
Valvegear
Or the fact that expenditure for track is now far exceeding how much money they get.
  jakar Assistant Commissioner

Location: Melbourne
The speed restriction is a lot cheaper than actually doing some sensible maintenance work.

Yet another example of how the V Line hierarchy does not have a clue about the nuts and bolts workings of a railway system.
Valvegear
You seem to be confused between people not having a clue about how to run a railway and people not having the budget to do what they want to do. Want more/better maintenance work, then ask the state government if they're going to increase V/Line's budget.

At any rate the article is two months old from August 30, no idea why its been dredged up now?
  YM-Mundrabilla Minister for Railways

Location: Mundrabilla but I'd rather be in Narvik
The speed restriction is a lot cheaper than actually doing some sensible maintenance work.

Yet another example of how the V Line hierarchy does not have a clue about the nuts and bolts workings of a railway system.
You seem to be confused between people not having a clue about how to run a railway and people not having the budget to do what they want to do. Want more/better maintenance work, then ask the state government if they're going to increase V/Line's budget.

At any rate the article is two months old from August 30, no idea why its been dredged up now?
jakar
I doubt that Valvegear is confused in the slightest.
  Valvegear Dr Beeching

Location: Norda Fittazroy
Thanks YM.

Just look at the composition of the V Line Board: Lawyer, Water Board ( and similar) Executive, Manager of peak Industry Group, Investment Banker, Insurance Executive.

Bags of railway experience and knowledge there, eh?

But, don't stop there; have a look at the Executives. Then, try finding the Chief Mechanical Engineer, the Chief Civil Engineer, the Chief Electrical Engineer - that'll do for starters.
  LancedDendrite Chief Commissioner

Location: Gheringhap Loop Autonomous Zone
The role of a board is to provide organisational governance, not day-to-day management. That's what the (suitably qualified) senior managers are paid to do. Aside from the investment banker I don't see anything too out of place with the vocations of the board members at V/Line. Pick on management instead.
  jakar Assistant Commissioner

Location: Melbourne
The role of a board is to provide organisational governance, not day-to-day management.
LancedDendrite
This.

It might be time for some to realize that times and roles have changed and that the VR no longer exists.

Everyone i've spoken too from the CEO to the local ganger knows what needs to repaired/upgraded/replaced/improved and so on across all aspects of V/Line but they all say they simply don't have the funds to do what they want.
  speedemon08 Mary

Location: I think by now you should have figured it out
The role of a board is to provide organisational governance, not day-to-day management.
This.

It might be time for some to realize that times and roles have changed and that the VR no longer exists.

Everyone i've spoken too from the CEO to the local ganger knows what needs to repaired/upgraded/replaced/improved and so on across all aspects of V/Line but they all say they simply don't have the funds to do what they want.
jakar
Same with ARTC to be frank, after working with gangers a bit
  Valvegear Dr Beeching

Location: Norda Fittazroy
The role of a board is to provide organisational governance, not day-to-day management. That's what the (suitably qualified) senior managers are paid to do. Aside from the investment banker I don't see anything too out of place with the vocations of the board members at V/Line. Pick on management instead.
Lanced Dendrite
Isn't the mangement answerable to the Board?
If the Board knows nothing about running railways, how does it pick (ahem) "suitably qualified" management?

Let's have a look at the Mangement:-
CEO
Executive General Managers of:-
1.Operations
2.Assett Management
3.Program and Delivery
4.Network Development and Integration
5.Health, Safety & Environment
6.Business Services (& Chief Financial manager)
7.People
8.Corporate Planning and Risk
9.Corporate Affairs.

I can see some roles there, but what the hell are 4, 8 and 9 doing?  How does Operations differ from Program and Delivery?

I note that nobody has yet risen to the challenge of finding the Chief Mechanical/Civil/ Electrical Engineers.
  wobert Chief Commissioner

Location: Half way between Propodolla and Kinimakatka
8     is the planning for the size of the executive bonus and the risk of getting away with it.
  freightgate Minister for Railways

Location: Albury, New South Wales
Not sure of the answer but is V/line doing the maintenance themselves or is it all outsourced to a party other than them ?

If the work is outsourced consider bringing it back in house. The costs and pricing has alleyways been a problem in Victoria.

Benchmark track mai tenancy costs for V/Line against Queensland rail and see difference.

What would the answer be ?
  BrentonGolding Chief Commissioner

Location: Maldon Junction
The costs and pricing has alleyways been a problem in Victoria.

Benchmark track mai tenancy costs for V/Line against Queensland rail and see difference.
freightgate
Dang them alleyways and their narrow, wicked ways! And it's a bit early for a Mai Tai innit?
  michaelgm Chief Commissioner

8     is the planning for the size of the executive bonus and the risk of getting away with it.
wobert
8 should be renumbered to 1
After all isn't that the priority?
  8077 Chief Train Controller

Location: Crossing the Rubicon
Not sure of the answer but is V/line doing the maintenance themselves or is it all outsourced to a party other than them ?

If the work is outsourced consider bringing it back in house. The costs and pricing has alleyways been a problem in Victoria.

Benchmark track mai tenancy costs for V/Line against Queensland rail and see difference.

What would the answer be ?
freightgate

V/line does own some equipment themselves.

Benchmarking maintenance costs in Victoria with those in NSW and Queensland and perhaps even WA with the vendor in that state is something I would be keen to understand.

has this ever been completed?  

If not then it should happen as a part of the auditor general review.
  bingley hall Minister for Railways

Location: Last train to Skaville
Simple solutions......

Raise fares..........far too cheap for a long time

Raise taxes.........no one has a problem with that

Get the private sector cowboys to work for less

Supply the government with fairy dust so they can magic more money

Become a politician and sort the problem out

Razz
  YM-Mundrabilla Minister for Railways

Location: Mundrabilla but I'd rather be in Narvik
The role of a board is to provide organisational governance, not day-to-day management.
This.

It might be time for some to realize that times and roles have changed and that the VR no longer exists.

Everyone i've spoken too from the CEO to the local ganger knows what needs to repaired/upgraded/replaced/improved and so on across all aspects of V/Line but they all say they simply don't have the funds to do what they want.
jakar
No one has enough money to do as they wish but in a public transport authority someone, somewhere, should have the guts to say publicly the effect that said $$$ shortage will have on operations/safety/service etc etc like adding 5 minutes to Geelong running times (Heaven forbid).

A bit less on pie in the sky CAPEX and a bit more on OPEX would not go amiss. Only downside to this would be Jacinta Allan would not get her mug on TV every night and she could concentrate on representing those obliged to use Vline, Metro and Yarra Trams.

What happened to the standard Certificates included in traditional Railway Annual Reports where the relevant Head of Branch certified that the track, rolling stock (whatever) under his control had been maintained in a safe condition throughout the year? I cannot find any such certificate in Vline's last Annual Report. Is this because:

  • Things were not maintained eg Vlocity wheels a year or two ago?
  • No one is prepared to put their signature to such a document (thereby avoiding the Royal Commission to follow a Victorian Granville)?


There is damned near no mention of operational maintenance in the Annual Report other than crowing that they spent the equivalent of $1,200 per kilometre on maintenance between Dunolly and Yelta during 2018/2019 (equates to 2 or 3 sleepers per km). This is obviously an erroneous figure but if you cannot get your Annual Report right what hope is there especially given the number of bean counters, lawyers and bankers on the Board? They are not much good for anything else it seems.

Rail in all its forms is not to be run 'professionally' - it is to be run 'politically'.
  mejhammers1 Chief Commissioner

@YM-Mundrabilla "A bit less pie in the sky CAPEX (Gold plated Airport Rail, HSR to Geelong & SRL) and a bit more on OPEX".
Hear hear.

Geelong and Ballarat does not need high speed rail Melbourne does not need a Suburban Rail loop and we can deilver rail to the Airport for less than $10 billion.

Michael
  Carnot Minister for Railways

I think one thing that sometimes gets missed is that any improvement to the regional rail network (passenger and freight) now involves the State Government making it contingent on the Federal Government pitching in.  But that doesn't seem to be the case with Metropolitan Melbourne (i.e. We will sell off the Port of Melb and also use our Stamp Duty profits for funding that)...

Anyway, back on topic - the medium term plan is for the slow Class 2 (or is it Class 3) East track from Kyneton to Sunbury to be upgraded to Class 1 (as it always should've been since 2006 IMO).

Quoting again from the Western Rail Plan: https://bigbuild.vic.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0003/333705/Western-Rail-Plan.pdf

"Track upgrades between Kyneton and Sunbury would be needed to provide consistent high speeds on both lines, run more services and improve journey times."
  TOQ-1 Deputy Commissioner

Location: Power Trainger
V/Line clearly not having the money to do what they need to do is no surprise to me.

What has always confused me was during the Wheel Wear debacle, the government asked if V/Line needed any additional funds to sort it out. And they said no, they would fix the problem out of their ordinary budget. Which makes you wonder, what went without during that time so they could get all their Vlocities back into service?
  Valvegear Dr Beeching

Location: Norda Fittazroy
Simple solutions......

Raise fares..........far too cheap for a long time

Raise taxes.........no one has a problem with that

Get the private sector cowboys to work for less

Supply the government with fairy dust so they can magic more money

Become a politician and sort the problem out
"bingley hall"
You left out the important one - get people who know how to run a railway. Until that happens, nothing will improve.
  YM-Mundrabilla Minister for Railways

Location: Mundrabilla but I'd rather be in Narvik
V/Line clearly not having the money to do what they need to do is no surprise to me.

What has always confused me was during the Wheel Wear debacle, the government asked if V/Line needed any additional funds to sort it out. And they said no, they would fix the problem out of their ordinary budget. Which makes you wonder, what went without during that time so they could get all their Vlocities back into service?
TOQ-1
What intrigues and confuses me with the wheels is that despite the investigation undertaken by the undoubted talent of Monash University who came up with what caused the wear but no one has reported on how the condition was allowed to develop as it did until that fateful day when much of the fleet was instantly grounded. OK nothing to see here yet suddenly grounded overnight.

If you own a fleet of rental cars they don't all need new tyres the same day.

Perhaps Sir Humphrey Appleby wrote the scope for the investigation. Smile
  hbedriver Chief Train Controller

Maybe time to separate the issues  

Original article was about a few late trains cancelled to allow for routine maintenance. Doing so increases the gang’s productive time by around 50%, so speaking as an operator it seems reasonable.

Separate issue is reducing V’l speeds from 130 to 115 on east track Sunbury to Kyneton. They also were reduced on Down line Craigieburn to Dysart. Our bosses told us it was because the older V’l trains were weighed, and found to be 10 tonnes  heavier than original.

The wheel wear issue a few years back reflects the then CEO, who ultimately lost his job because he lied to the Minister.
  jakar Assistant Commissioner

Location: Melbourne
In almost perfect timing for some in this thread, it has just been announced that Public transport minister Melissa Horne has appointed 3 new directors to the V/Line board. I eagerly await Valvegear's detailed response as to why these 3 people are utterly useless and can't tell the difference between a Vlocity and a station! Wink
(not sure if there is a public link yet)

In other news related to this thread the preliminary ground work has begun to re-sleeper the East line between Sunbury and Kyneton with concrete sleepers to bring the track speed for Vlocities back to 130.
  ngarner Assistant Commissioner

Location: Seville
In almost perfect timing for some in this thread, it has just been announced that Public transport minister Melissa Horne has appointed 3 new directors to the V/Line board. I eagerly await Valvegear's detailed response as to why these 3 people are utterly useless and can't tell the difference between a Vlocity and a station! Wink
(not sure if there is a public link yet)

In other news related to this thread the preliminary ground work has begun to re-sleeper the East line between Sunbury and Kyneton with concrete sleepers to bring the track speed for Vlocities back to 130.
jakar
130 is good but with a little more work on the roadbed the state could increase the speed to match the west line

Neil

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