Noarlunga Line Shutdown

 
  Milkomeda Chief Train Controller

Loads of people at Noarlunga and Seaford station this morning gonna go for another ride on the EMU before I call it a day

There must've been at least 30 gunzellers on the first round this morning.

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  Pressman Spirit of the Vine

Location: Wherever the Tin Chook or Qantas takes me
Some problems around lunchtime today
Pedestrian crossing at Fairfax Ave was 'stuck' on, East Ave level crossing was down.
A DMU set city bound and 4003 Seaford bound passed through both very slowly. 4003 stopped at signal 631 (displaying red) for a few moments before proceeding (didn't see if the signal changed) Police were present at East Avenue directing road traffic away from the crossing.
Signal techs were quickly on the scene. (in SA Gov plated vehicles)
  justapassenger Chief Commissioner

Some problems around lunchtime today
Pedestrian crossing at Fairfax Ave was 'stuck' on, East Ave level crossing was down.
A DMU set city bound and 4003 Seaford bound passed through both very slowly. 4003 stopped at signal 631 (displaying red) for a few moments before proceeding (didn't see if the signal changed) Police were present at East Avenue directing road traffic away from the crossing.
Signal techs were quickly on the scene. (in SA Gov plated vehicles)
"Pressman"
There seems to be a lot of trouble getting those crossings to work correctly at the moment.

The 'Emerson' crossing of South/Cross Roads is also one that has been stuck closed a few times in the last week.
  steam4ian Chief Commissioner

26 persons on the 0630 ex Seaford this morning.

Some left the train at NC and 4 (including myself) left the train at Woodlands Park to cross to the 0700 ex ARS.

The 0700 ex ARS actually had passengers who detrained before Seaford.

The ride on the new section was OK but like the section HC to MR showed that the rails were made up of short sections even if welded. A rail grinder would help.

Ian
  steam4ian Chief Commissioner

Ian,

That is precisely why I suggested that a permanent team be an integral part of the Adelaide Metro organisation. I am not sure whether you are agreeing with me or not.

If a twig needs to be removed from those innocuous looking wires, it would be a little inconvenient to have to fly in trained staff, let alone their cherry pickers etc. from interstate or New Zealand.

South Australia has in the past had an ETSA which supplied our needs with, from memory, very few outages. Presumably its very expensive successors that have relieved the taxpayers from debt and loaded it onto the customers (the same taxpayers) with an added exorbitant profit margin which has been paid to shareholders of completely unnecessary retail companies which don't do a single thing except send out the bills and are based mainly in Hong Kong, have a few qualified employees who could be persuaded to join the railway group.

This backward little state has managed to have more wind generation than the rest of the states put together and to be testing wave, hot rocks and solar thermal storage (Port Augusta) base load generation, so we could not only run our trains and trams on a zero carbon emission basis but we have the resident expertise to install and maintain distribution wiring of any kind.

Regards,

Brian.
SAR526

Brian

I agree regarding the permanent team or teams, that was my point. It was misunderstood to be a political comment when it was only a question.

Every operating shift will require a minimum of two persons just to do the switching. In days of yore I could just walk up to an HV circuit breaker or switch and trip it and isolate it; I am not saying I was that cavalier. Nowadays it takes two people, at least one in non flammable PPE with the other checking every move. Since 24 hour operation requires 4 shift teams to cover the work that's jobs for 8 persons minimum. The rest can be on call.

There are plenty of skilled persons in this state but do they have the right skill set. They might have HV electrical accreditation and be well familiar with ETSA/SAPN techniques and hardware but do they have rail accreditation and familiarity with the hardware? It does take time.

I have been involved with the grid connection of a number of wind farms including being the Technical Certifier for the first in the state. Believe me, they are not that clever.

Ian
  simont141 Chief Commissioner

Location: Adelaide
Some problems around lunchtime today
Pedestrian crossing at Fairfax Ave was 'stuck' on, East Ave level crossing was down.
A DMU set city bound and 4003 Seaford bound passed through both very slowly. 4003 stopped at signal 631 (displaying red) for a few moments before proceeding (didn't see if the signal changed) Police were present at East Avenue directing road traffic away from the crossing.
Signal techs were quickly on the scene. (in SA Gov plated vehicles)
Pressman

It looks like all signals were red. Definitely not the first time that East Ave and Fairfax crossing have got stuck - in fact I would guess it's around double figures now.

Trains were around 15 min late too.
  Milkomeda Chief Train Controller

One of the EMU passenger services arrived into ARS 22 minutes late yesterday. The display information at the Showground station had the service already departed and it was showing the information for the following service another passenger who was waiting at the Showgrounds station with me started to wonder if the EMU had broken down because it was so late.
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
One of the EMU passenger services arrived into ARS 22 minutes late yesterday. The display information at the Showground station had the service already departed and it was showing the information for the following service another passenger who was waiting at the Showgrounds station with me started to wonder if the EMU had broken down because it was so late.
Milkomeda

You were actually using Showgrounds station?  I saw an article (I think it was on News/Advertiser) bemoaning the fact that nobody was going to use that brand new station - so your presence there is proving them wrong.

Did you find out the reason for the extreme lateness of the train?

Also, are there any reports on how the Seaford line/EMU's are going on their first weekday of operation?
  steam4ian Chief Commissioner

Don

See if you can get on to the Facebook page of Noarlunga Commuters 2013. I can't invite you on because I have been kicked off for reminding the people that there are other passenger stations on the between Adealaide and Seaford and those people also deserve a service. Selfish gits, think the line was built just for them.

There is also Noarlunga Commuters 2014 which is more reasonable.
  SAR526 Chief Train Controller

Location: Adelaide, South Australia.
I agree regarding the permanent team or teams, that was my point. …….
…….. Nowadays it takes two people, at least one in non flammable PPE with the other checking every move. Since 24 hour operation requires 4 shift teams to cover the work that's jobs for 8 persons minimum. The rest can be on call.

There are plenty of skilled persons in this state but do they have the right skill set. …….

I have been involved with the grid connection of a number of wind farms including being the Technical Certifier for the first in the state. Believe me, they are not that clever.
steam4ian

It sounds to me as if you'd be the ideal person to set up the permanent Adelaide Metro Team if you are not, like me, too long in the tooth. Surely there is someone who could do a good job of recruiting the right men and supervising the process.

My essential point is that is is highly desirable to have a local team with local knowledge which is available to do both preventive maintenance and make a very quick response to an emergency.


Regards,

Brian.
  witsend Chief Commissioner

Location: Front RH Seat of a School Bus
One of the EMU passenger services arrived into ARS 22 minutes late yesterday. The display information at the Showground station had the service already departed and it was showing the information for the following service another passenger who was waiting at the Showgrounds station with me started to wonder if the EMU had broken down because it was so late.
Milkomeda

11:30am train departed 12 minutes late from Seaford and arrived 10 late in to Adelaide, and caused a cascade delay on the network. It's simply more passengers than expected. Worse still, at Noarlunga Centre, 1/2 the train detrained and got on and delayed the Seaford Bound train by 5 minutes. Effectively all services were running 15 minutes later as the delay cascaded further. Part of it is simply Adelaide passengers mill around the doors and prevent people from getting off then take their time to load. It's a simple fact there were more people than expected. I mean 2 car 3000s running, when it probably should have been a 3 car set, couple with unfamiliarity with the electric train, as it is quite different.
  1S47 Assistant Commissioner

Location: On the Down Fast
Monday 24th: Two EMUs were in public service on the Seaford line this morning (4003 & 4004). I was lucky to get 4003 to and from Seaford Meadows. Some impressions:

· All trains, diesel and electric, were running pretty much on time in the morning off-peak (10.30 to 13.00). My EMU had several extended stops at certain stations, presumably waiting for “time”.

· 4003 was quiet, clean and cool, as you might expect.

· The EMUs did seem faster than the familiar old DEMUs. I’m not sure if it was just the more powerful acceleration, which is noticeable, which gave this impression. The “pass all yellow signals at 40 kph” rule is still in place, so the EMUs trundle along at 25 m.p.h. over some sections.

· Next station announcements on the train worked perfectly in both directions. None of the issues with GPS which were mentioned in yesterday's reports.

· On the Seaford-bound train, quite a lot of passengers stayed on the train after Noarlunga Centre, and quite a few joined there. I had expected most people would leave here. These were all “normals”, not gunzels along for the ride.

· Platform 1 at Noarlunga (east side of island platform) is now in regular use for Seaford trains.

· Most passengers seemed pleased with the new trains. For example, talking on their mobiles “I’m on a NEW train . . . “ A few were so happy that they actually validated their tickets!

Bad points are:-

· The ride was pretty rough on some of the faster stretches further down south.
Unbelievable for a brand new train on fully re-build track.
Not at all comfortable when sitting over a bogie next to the interconnecting gangway.


· Seaford Meadows station, which looks nice enough in photos from a distance, is incredibly harsh, bleak and metallic when you actually use it. Just acres of security fencing, steel mesh, razor wire and bomb-proof concrete. The footbridge looks like a corridor in a prison.
  David Peters Dr Beeching

Location: "With Hey Boy".
Yes Adelaide Metro are renowned for running smaller than needed trains when some event is on. However opening the new extension they should know that more than average numbers were going to travel so should have had more cars available than two car sets. It seems they try to run all special events as two car trains when really 3 or more if possible would be better! Get your act together Adelaide Metro as the public for whom you provide the service is rapidly getting stroppy over the lack of foresight during big events from you. A little more thinking on their part would help a lot a times.
  Some rail man Junior Train Controller

Location: CIA Headquarters in Washington D.C
And Connex and Metro in Melbourne are renowned for a lack of trains on special events. If they order more EMU's the Seaford line will have a minimum of 3 cars per service 7 days a week compared to other lines with 1 car minimum services at the moment.
  Jumbo2001 Junior Train Controller

Yes Adelaide Metro are renowned for running smaller than needed trains when some event is on. However opening the new extension they should know that more than average numbers were going to travel so should have had more cars available than two car sets. It seems they try to run all special events as two car trains when really 3 or more if possible would be better! Get your act together Adelaide Metro as the public for whom you provide the service is rapidly getting stroppy over the lack of foresight during big events from you. A little more thinking on their part would help a lot a times.
David Peters


Lets be fair here, the line opened yesterday, and today is business as usual. Hardly a big event. Service is extremely frequent to all stations, and as needs to be reminded, the timetable on the Seaford line, combined with the demands of all other lines mean that building up consists (especially in peak) can't happen. During peaks, there are not one spare* car in the system. Not until more EMU's roll out, then some more redundancy, and the ability to build up consists will occur. Unfortunately, the reality is the cars come out of peak, need to return to Dry Creek for refuelling, which takes time with one fuel bay.

*Aside from railcars under maintenance at Dry Creek, and a 2000 power car thats been out of commission for a couple months now.
  steam4ian Chief Commissioner

Quote of the day!

" A few were so happy that they actually validated their tickets!"

Laughing
  62440 Chief Commissioner

Comments on crowds reminded me of the opening day at Clarkson when the PTA in their wisdom ran the first train as a 2 car which probably still holds the record for passenger loading. That was better than the 4 car following which was stuck at failed points for 40 minutes, so Adelaide, it could have been worse.
  mclaren2007 Assistant Commissioner

Location: recharging my myki
Seaford Meadows is just an employee changeover "station". I couldn't recall anyone other than employees getting on/off the train.
  steam4ian Chief Commissioner

There is a fair bit of Seaford just west of Seaford Meadows and it is handier to people from McLaren Vale.
  justapassenger Chief Commissioner

There is a fair bit of Seaford just west of Seaford Meadows and it is handier to people from McLaren Vale.
"steam4ian"
Yep, a good combination of a new development area on one side and a future-proof park-and-ride station ready for greater usage in years to come. I do hope a little effort is put into prettifying it over time though, it's an eyesore as it is currently!

I disagree about the convenience for people driving from McVale though. The combination of better road access (using the Robinson Road shortcut as the AdMet buses do, or Tatachilla Road to completely avoid Victor Harbor Road) and being conveniently close to the shops at Seaford Central would make it that much more attractive to use Seaford for me. The only thing that would make me choose Seaford Meadows would be if the parking at Seaford was overcrowded and there are parking restrictions on the local streets - I would support a two hour limit if a local resident's permit is not displayed.

If the Y-junction of Main South and Victor Harbor Roads was ever grade-separated the balance might shift to using Seaford Meadows. As it is, during the AM peak traffic and after major events on the south coast (e.g. coming home from the TDU this year, we should have gone via Ashbourne and Kangarilla) the last bit of Victor Harbor Road approaching the junction is a slow crawl.
  SAR526 Chief Train Controller

Location: Adelaide, South Australia.
….. the last bit of Victor Harbor Road approaching the junction is a slow crawl.
justapassenger

Off topic: I cannot understand why the intersection of the Yorke Penunsula and Port Augusta roads and the Victor Harbor and Main South Roads have not long ago been grade separated. Both are nightmares in holiday traffic conditions and dangerous at all times.

If the rail access to both had to be abandoned (understandable in the case of the round about route to Victor Harbor), then at least the road conditions should be made as safe as possible.

Perhaps Roads Before Railways Tony could put his (our) money where his mouth is.
  1S47 Assistant Commissioner

Location: On the Down Fast
Off topic: I cannot understand why the intersection of the Yorke Penunsula and Port Augusta roads and the Victor Harbor and Main South Roads have not long ago been grade separated. Both are nightmares in holiday traffic conditions . . . . . .
SAR526

These locations are brought up routinely in the media every Easter, Long Weekend etc, complete with helicopter shots of the long tail-backs.  
The standard government answer is "yes, they are congested, but there are only a couple of times a year when they are really bad, so not worth the money to build elaborate intersections".     Basically you need to suck it up and wait in the line of traffic.    
Same thing with full duplication of the Victor Harbor Road.   99.8% of the time it's totally fit for purpose as it is, couple of times a year all the city-dwellers pack up and head off to Victor or Port Elliot at the same time (or return home at the same time) whinge about the traffic jam and demand a freeway.
Victor Harbor Rd/Main South Road can be bad in morning peak hour, but there are plenty other intersections all over the metro area just as bad, and worse.
  nm39 Chief Commissioner

Location: By a road taking pictures
These locations are brought up routinely in the media every Easter, Long Weekend etc, complete with helicopter shots of the long tail-backs.
The standard government answer is "yes, they are congested, but there are only a couple of times a year when they are really bad, so not worth the money to build elaborate intersections". Basically you need to suck it up and wait in the line of traffic.
Same thing with full duplication of the Victor Harbor Road. 99.8% of the time it's totally fit for purpose as it is, couple of times a year all the city-dwellers pack up and head off to Victor or Port Elliot at the same time (or return home at the same time) whinge about the traffic jam and demand a freeway.
Victor Harbor Rd/Main South Road can be bad in morning peak hour, but there are plenty other intersections all over the metro area just as bad, and worse.
1S47

Totally agree. However you missed the biggest deciding factor- Does the hold-up when it occurs affect the Road Transport Industry enough to warrant change? If the hold-ups occur mainly during Public Holidays when there is less Trucks wanting to go through then it won't get much attention.
  justapassenger Chief Commissioner

Off topic: I cannot understand why the intersection of the Yorke Penunsula and Port Augusta roads and the Victor Harbor and Main South Roads have not long ago been grade separated. Both are nightmares in holiday traffic conditions and dangerous at all times.
"SAR526"
I agree that the Port Wakefield junction needs to be grade separated and linked into a dual carriageway bypass. It would be safe enough for normal non-holiday traffic if Australian drivers were properly trained, but even if we started proper education of new drivers tomorrow that wouldn't do anything about the drivers with 40 years of sloppy driving under their belts.

In my opinion the Victor Harbor Road Y-junction is perfectly safe for regular use now that it has signals and three lanes on the approach - you may not have been there recently but they are visible (along with the Seaford Line nearing construction completion at the time) on the late 2012 images on Bing Maps. The only problem there is that it is slow during both the daily AM peak and 6-8 days of heavy holiday/event traffic each year, but as I said before smart people can avoid it by making a short diversion (using Robinson Road or Tatachilla Road to approach from the South Road leg of the Y) or using a completely different route.
  Pressman Spirit of the Vine

Location: Wherever the Tin Chook or Qantas takes me
I agree that the Port Wakefield junction needs to be grade separated and linked into a dual carriageway bypass. It would be safe enough for normal non-holiday traffic if Australian drivers were properly trained, but even if we started proper education of new drivers tomorrow that wouldn't do anything about the drivers with 40 years of sloppy driving under their belts.

In my opinion the Victor Harbor Road Y-junction is perfectly safe for regular use now that it has signals and three lanes on the approach - you may not have been there recently but they are visible (along with the Seaford Line nearing construction completion at the time) on the late 2012 images on Bing Maps. The only problem there is that it is slow during both the daily AM peak and 6-8 days of heavy holiday/event traffic each year, but as I said before smart people can avoid it by making a short diversion (using Robinson Road or Tatachilla Road to approach from the South Road leg of the Y) or using a completely different route.
"justapassenger"


I hate to think just how long a Port Wakefield By-Pass has been promised. I believe it was the late 70's when the dual carriageway Port Wakefield Road reached just south of Port Wakefield! I can vividly remember the tail backs at both the Princes Hwy / Kadina Road and the Ardrossan/Kadina road intersections even way back then. (the Holidays at Corny Point were worth it!)

I find the Victor / South Rds Y flows very well now when compared to the old days when the traffic management was a Stop Sign, I used to sit in tail back almost to the top of the hill!

I believe the bottle neck is now the two lane section between the Onkaparinga river bridge and the expressway entry.

Back on topic, managed to see both a 3100 pair (south bound) and a 4000 set (northbound) on the long bridge at the same time today (they crossed at the southern end of the bridge)

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