Public Transport Victoria forum hears call for more Maryborough train services
State Government Commits to Developing Rail Infrastructure for Victoria
Horsham residents to be quizzed about future use of dormant rail corridor land
No choppers here: Malcolm Turnbull takes the train to Geelong
Opposition Leader Matthew Guy backs Melbourne Airport rail link
Jail time for train threats to Vline Staff
Premier Daniel Andrews hears efforts to address Central Goldfields disadvantage, push for more Maryborough trains
The Inland Rail Link Melbourne to Brisbane a Similar Case as the RAA's Bendigo - Geelong Rail Link
North-West Rail Alliance urges more council support amid push for return of Mildura passenger rail
Grampians Rail Trail: Shire calls for community to step up and manage facility
V/LINE has called on the State Government to do something meaningful about Geelong rail delays instead of persisting with "pointless" penalties.
The government-run operator was fined $1.7 million for trains that ran late between July 2011 and March 2012.
It is also on track for another hefty fine for the April to June quarter that was plagued by delays.
But V/Line communications manager Daniel Moloney said the penalty system was an "outdated concept" that was ultimately balanced out by government subsidies.
Mr Moloney said V/Line wanted to plan for the further transport needs of Geelong and continuing soaring patronage, not waste time on arbitrary figures.
"It's the government fining a government agency," he said.
"It's only good motivation if you're returning a profit to shareholders (like Metro).
"No one's being held responsible at all. We'd like a more accountable system that directly shows the type of delays.
"We were quick to say the April signal faults were our own, but 80-90 per cent are not.
"If we're stuck behind a Metro train that's running late, copping a penalty is crazy."
Mr Moloney said regular commuters would not be impressed seeing V/Line fined.
"It's not in any way going to help," he said.
"You can't afford to rip that much money out of V/Line - if anything we need more.
"What people want to see is improvements at Newport, Regional Rail Link, things that actually mean something and we wholeheartedly agree.
"Regional Rail Link will give us control of our own lines."
Public Transport Users Association Geelong conveyor Paul Westcott agreed the fines were a farce.
But he said he believed V/Line did not get fined for delays caused by Metro.
"It's made to look like something is happening, but it's moving money from one pocket into another," Mr Westcott said.
"There should be something to penalise poor service but I think people would prefer to see genuine efforts to fix the system, not the run-around."
A spokesman for Public Transport Minister Terry Mulder said the Government and V/Line were working together to address the causes of delays, through signal inspections, the $200 million announced in the
Budget for rolling stock and, ultimately, the Regional Rail Link to ease congestion.
"The Coalition Government will also be building new railcar stabling sidings north of North Geelong station because of the importance that we place on connecting Geelong, Bellarine Peninsula and Surf Coast residents with Southern Cross and beyond," he said.
The spokesman said the fine and bonus system was established in 1999 when the train and tram operators were franchised, but V/Line had reverted to government ownership in 2002.
"The principle remains that just as Metro and Yarra Trams are publicly accountable for their punctuality and reliability of their trains and trams, so should V/Line be," he said.
This article first appeared on www.geelongadvertiser.com.au
About this website
Railpage version 3.10.0.0037
All logos and trademarks in this site are property of their respective owner. The comments are property of their posters, all the rest is © 2003-2020 Interactive Omnimedia Pty Ltd.
You can syndicate our news using one of the RSS feeds.