Twenty (20) years...plus a few months since the demise of the Vinelander

 
  Casper1975 Station Master

Location: Ouyen, Victoria
The government do run a service, it's called a bus. We must get over the "I" need trains EVERYWHERE.
speedemon08

Disabled people who have mobility issues can't use a bus so it's much better to provide a service which everyone can use, The government need to understand that the train issue will never go away & the only way they can solve this is by re-introducing a passenger rail service.

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  MD Chief Commissioner

Location: Canbera
How many towns are there in Victoria that used to have a train service but no longer do?
I used to live in Wonthaggi until 1972 and traveled there many times by train, but the line closed in 1978
and now there is only a bus service.
Same is true for many towns throughout Australia.
Every town simply cannot have a train service, regardless of how much people might like to have one.
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
Disabled people who have mobility issues can't use a bus so it's much better to provide a service which everyone can use, The government need to understand that the train issue will never go away & the only way they can solve this is by re-introducing a passenger rail service.
Casper1975

This Is a very poor argument !

Road Coach services do cater for people with mobility Issues, If for some reason a coach service can't provide a transport service for a mobility impaired person an alternative would be arranged like a disabled equipped taxi or local community bus.

As MD points out, Mildura, Ouyen, etc are not the only communities without a public train service.
  billybaxter Deputy Commissioner

Location: Bosnia Park, Fairfield
It would be cheaper to provide taxis for disabled passengers than put a train on.
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
How many towns are there in Victoria that used to have a train service but no longer do?
I used to live in Wonthaggi until 1972 and traveled there many times by train, but the line closed in 1978
and now there is only a bus service.
Same is true for many towns throughout Australia.
Every town simply cannot have a train service, regardless of how much people might like to have one.
MD

What about every regional city in Victoria Question

Mildura, is without a doubt the largest regional CITY in Victoria without a pax rail service.

Indeed Mildura is a larger regional city than several others that DO have a rail service. IE Warrnambool, Traralgon, Bairnsdale, Moe, Wangaratta, Benalla, Echuca, Swan Hill, Wodonga and Castlemaine.

http://www.mildura.vic.gov.au/Demographics_Statistics

I don't write these facts as a demand to re-introduce a pax rail service immediately, but to point out to many posters who are unaware of the size of the City of Mildura.

Meanwhile....the locals continue to write to the Sunraysia Daily advocating the return of pax trains to Mildura.

http://www.sunraysiadaily.com.au/story/2076473/setting-record-straight-on-the-train-blame/?cs=1385

Mike.
  Bogong Chief Commissioner

Location: Essendon Aerodrome circa 1980
How many towns are there in Victoria that used to have a train service but no longer do? ...
MD

I think every town* in Victoria between the wars had a passenger train service** except for four: Lorne, Omeo, Edenhope and Corryong.

* I'm defining a town (as distinct from a hamlet or village) as having at least two pubs and a small selection of shops.

** My definition of 'passenger train service' includes rather slow options such as 'car goods' trains.

A few more qualifiers for my bold claim.
- Some current towns like Mt Beauty didn't exist until after WWII or like Apollo Bay, Torquay and Inverloch, were only tiny villages before the war.
- Marysville only ever had one pub.
- Former big towns like Woods Point had shrunk to village status by 1920.
  Casper1975 Station Master

Location: Ouyen, Victoria
It would be cheaper to provide taxis for disabled passengers than put a train on.
billybaxter

Do you know how expensive that would be If I want to fly out of Mildura I have to pay $180.00 for a Taxi from Ouyen to Mildura.
  Ballast_Plough Chief Commissioner

Location: Lilydale, Vic
Now before you all start talking about profits well guess what public transport is not meant to make a profit because it's operated by the government so really when you pay for tickets it's to keep the service operating.
Casper1975

You keep throwing that line in but you're not reading what others are saying. Everyone is actually agreeing wth you and acknowledging that a passenger service isn't there to make money - what they're qualifying it with though is that it isn't also a blanket excuse to hand over obscene amounts of money no questions asked.

Think of it from the politicians perspective. On one hand they cop it daily in the media about the hot summer with overheating trains with defective airconditioning, rails buckling, signalling failing, crush loading on trams. On the other hand they get a handful of letters to the Sunraysia Daily and a petition from 500 people saying they want a train back that used to carry on average 50 people per day. The funds they have to play with are minimal anyway - what do you really think they're going to prioritise?
  Bogong Chief Commissioner

Location: Essendon Aerodrome circa 1980
Do you know how expensive that would be If I want to fly out of Mildura I have to pay $180.00 for a Taxi from Ouyen to Mildura.
Casper1975

... or... you could just take the bus.

It takes 7 hours from Ouyen to Spencer St station, much faster than a restored train could do the journey.
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
There's a recession on; it may or may not be apparent to you yet (depending on what industry you work in) but there's ominous signs.  Look at how worried Denis Napthine has been in the last 24 hours with extending his sympathies to the thousands of Toyota workers who've just been told their jobs are going... Napthine knows that things are really crook and he has no ideas on how to fix it.  

If anything I would expect that the next few years will revisit the Kennett era with massive cuts across the board to country rail services (amongst other things).
  Ballast_Plough Chief Commissioner

Location: Lilydale, Vic
There's a recession on; it may or may not be apparent to you yet (depending on what industry you work in) but there's ominous signs. Look at how worried Denis Napthine has been in the last 24 hours with extending his sympathies to the thousands of Toyota workers who've just been told their jobs are going... Napthine knows that things are really crook and he has no ideas on how to fix it.

If anything I would expect that the next few years will revisit the Kennett era with massive cuts across the board to country rail services (amongst other things).
don_dunstan

In all honesty, I don't think cutting existing services will save that much as the infrastructure and fixed overhead is already there and that's where most of the cost base is. Starting a new service from scratch is where the big bucks need to be found and a Mildura train falls into that category.
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
In all honesty, I don't think cutting existing services will save that much as the infrastructure and fixed overhead is already there and that's where most of the cost base is. Starting a new service from scratch is where the big bucks need to be found and a Mildura train falls into that category.
Ballast_Plough

It didn't stop Jeff despite the sunk cost.
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Is there a relationship between the number of trains using a track and the cost per train to use the track? That is to ask if there are more trains on the Mildura line between Maryborough and Mildura would this lower the cost of running per train?
  Ballast_Plough Chief Commissioner

Location: Lilydale, Vic
Don - even as a Liberal man, i don't believe Jeff did the right thing. I suspect at the time other games were being played.

Brian - in theory yes as the track access fees would surely be calculated based on the forecast volume over the line. Having said that, the traffic mix might come into play. If I was the GM of a freight operator and susbsequently found that the access fees were going to climb slightly because of upgrades to platforms and level crossing protection (for passenger traffic only), I'd be kicking up a stink and you might find the passenger operator had to foot the majority of the cost of any upgrades. I'm sure that PN didn't want to help fund the upgrade of Talbot for their grain trains.
  donttellmywife Chief Commissioner

Location: Antofagasta
Is there a relationship between the number of trains using a track and the cost per train to use the track? That is to ask if there are more trains on the Mildura line between Maryborough and Mildura would this lower the cost of running per train?
bevans

Cost due to who?  Cost to the rail operator?  Cost to the track owner?  Cost to government?

Have a read of this.

If the track has spare capacity for the type of train you are adding, the answer is generally "yes" from the point of view of the "actual amount of money that has to be spent providing and maintaining the track per train".  

(If the track does not have spare capacity for the type of train you are adding (which is the situation if you have a line suitable only for freight and you want to run passenger services on it) then the answer is "it depends".)

Each train that you run incurs a certain amount of additional maintenance, but there's a background fixed amount of maintenance that you need to do each period in order to simply keep the track open.  So as long as each train covers at least the actual direct maintenance that it causes, there's going to be some money left over to contribute to that fixed amount.

But that saving may not be passed onto other users.  For most non-mineral (and perhaps non-interstate) lines in this country, the track owner (government) loses money, and a couple of extra trains a week isn't going to change that.  As a result, things tend to be structured that the access provider gets to retain the benefit of any additional revenue, up until a limit that's approximately where they stop losing money (or where some body thinks they should stop losing money - which is not quite the same thing...), beyond which they may be required to start sharing the love.

Beyond regular, occurs every year type costs, the track owner, in some cases, also may want to eventually recover some part of the upfront cost of building (or significantly upgrading, if that's happened in living memory) the line in the first place.  My interpretation of the V/Line access arrangement is that it does not include this sort of provision.
  Ballast_Plough Chief Commissioner

Location: Lilydale, Vic
There was probably an element of that with the Toolamba line upgrade recently - wasn't some of that funded by the rice company?
  MD Chief Commissioner

Location: Canbera
Does VLINE as a track owner , charge VLINE as rail operator for the running of its own trains over its own tracks
and are such charges published?
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
Don - even as a Liberal man, i don't believe Jeff did the right thing. I suspect at the time other games were being played.
Ballast_Plough

Why do you think it's unlikely that it will happen again? I feel there's a really strong chance of substantial service cuts being announced, even in an election year. They also have to raise the fare-box again (above inflation) for V/Line following the padded introduction of Myki being the only ticket available for inter-urban travel; but I don't think service cuts are out of the question either.

Out of curiosity, what do you think the 'other games being played' were?
  ZH836301 Chief Commissioner

Location: BleakCity
In Mildura to get a flight down to Melbourne but spare a though for those living down the line In towns like Ouyen, Woomelang & Birchip, There are no real options for them
Casper1975

Yes there is. It's called a bus.

Disabled people who have mobility issues can't use a bus so it's much better to provide a service which everyone can use
Casper1975

The buses are wheelchair accessible.

Do you know how expensive that would be If I want to fly out of Mildura I have to pay $180.00 for a Taxi from Ouyen to Mildura.
Casper1975

The point he was making is that it would be cheaper to subsidise taxi fares than reinstate a train.

The current accessible taxi fare from Ouyen to Mildura is in the order of $120 ($1.67/km*105km+$3.30-$60).

Indeed Mildura is a larger regional city than several others that DO have a rail service. IE Warrnambool, Traralgon, Bairnsdale, Moe, Wangaratta, Benalla, Echuca, Swan Hill, Wodonga and Castlemaine.
The Vinelander

So?

If anything I would expect that the next few years will revisit the Kennett era with massive cuts across the board to country rail services (amongst other things).
don_dunstan

They could start with closing Eltham to Hurstbridge.
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Why do you think it's unlikely that it will happen again? I feel there's a really strong chance of substantial service cuts being announced, even in an election year. They also have to raise the fare-box again (above inflation) for V/Line following the padded introduction of Myki being the only ticket available for inter-urban travel; but I don't think service cuts are out of the question either.

Out of curiosity, what do you think the 'other games being played' were?
don_dunstan


If this was to happen then Napthine is history (if he is not already). See the issue for the government even considering cutbacks to Public Transport of ANY TYPE is the East West Link. They have totally backed themselves into a corner. The majority of people do not want the east west link despite the spin being touted by the Government.

If they were to now cut back passenger rail services then it is curtains and people will basically point to the East West Link having sucked the state dry.

Regards
Brian
  Gman_86 Chief Commissioner

Location: Melton, where the sparks dare not roam!
Why do you think it's unlikely that it will happen again? I feel there's a really strong chance of substantial service cuts being announced, even in an election year. They also have to raise the fare-box again (above inflation) for V/Line following the padded introduction of Myki being the only ticket available for inter-urban travel; but I don't think service cuts are out of the question either.

Out of curiosity, what do you think the 'other games being played' were?
don_dunstan

Don, What services do you think are most at risk of being shelved?
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
Don, What services do you think are most at risk of being shelved?
Gman_86

I don't know how others feel but I think the extremities and oddities of the network are most at risk. The Overland is a remnant from the decades of interstate rail travel before cheap air travel destroyed that market and it is an obvious candidate for closure this year. Maryborough and Ararat are candidates too if only because they've shut those lines before and there's plenty of room at the Ballarat station bus stop to do that again. The only thing that may stop them is that Denis Napthine will be trying to get a few seats in and around Maryborough/Ballarat in November to avoid the political embarrassment of being a 'one termer' so those reasons alone could save those lines. However Swan Hill, Echuca and Bairnsdale are safely in the National Party's territory so they would potentially have less ramifications... after all, The Country Party seldom ever get in trouble from their electorates over any decision their Liberal government partners make in Melbourne.

But yeah, the Overland is a certainty I'm sorry to say. Twice a week makes it hardly worth running at all for the few million Napthine chips in for it every year... they may also decide they only want to pay for one return service a day to Sydney rather than two?
  freightgate Minister for Railways

Location: Albury, New South Wales
You should not mistake the Overland as an interstate service only. It also provides an intrastate service.
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
However Swan Hill, Echuca and Bairnsdale are safely in the National Party's territory so they would potentially have less ramifications... after all, The Country Party seldom ever get in trouble from their electorates over any decision their Liberal government partners make in Melbourne.

But yeah, the Overland is a certainty I'm sorry to say. Twice a week makes it hardly worth running at all for the few million Napthine chips in for it every year... they may also decide they only want to pay for one return service a day to Sydney rather than two?
don_dunstan

I'm sure Craig Ingram (Gippsland East) and Russell Savage (Mildura)wouldn't agree.

I saw the Melbourne bound Overland as I was heading home on the 19:26 Ballarat last night.(I was going through Middle Footscray) Quite a fair crowd on board, and 2 MotoRail wagons with 9 vehicles attached.

There'll be no cuts to V/Line services before the election...and any thoughts towards that end would, to quote Sir Humphrey Appleby be a very courageous decision.

Mike.
  Ballast_Plough Chief Commissioner

Location: Lilydale, Vic
I also think The Overland needs to be considered separately if talking cutbacks as it's very different to the V/Line model. Not sure how true but I've read in a few places that GSR doesn't really want to run it - but they have to if they want the rights to The Ghan and the IP. So whether The Overland has a future is really up to the management of GSR. Whether the Bairnsdale / Warrnambool / Swan Hill get the chop is up to others.

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