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You expect a seat on weekday trains to Sydney to be hard to come by – but not on the weekend.
Yet commuters crammed into carriages is just what Clarence Slockee found when he got on the 4.42pm Sydney-bound train at North Wollongong.
Forget about finding a seat – he had to stand all the way from North Wollongong to Central.
And he wasn't alone – footage he shot on his phone between Sutherland and Waterfall show at least 17 people standing up.
On top of that there is also one woman who appears to be sitting on the floor.
“I got on at North Wollongong and it was already chockablock,” Mr Slockee said.
“Then you’ve got to stop at Thirroul and all stations to Helensburgh, so it progressively got fuller and fuller.
“It was pretty much already full from North Wollongong on.
“Everyone in the carriage I was on and all the other carriages, it was pretty much standing room only all the way to Sydney.”
Ironically Mr Slockee, who is spending the week in Sydney, caught the Sunday afternoon service because he thought he would beat the weekday crush.
A Transport for NSW spokesman confirmed this train normally operated as a four-car set but added that eight-car sets also serviced the South Coast during morning and afternoon peaks over the weekend.
“Current weekend service levels on the South Coast line are in line with demand, using both four-car and eight-car trains according to the usual levels of patronage,” the spokesman said.
He did not offer an explanation for the crowding on the 4.42pm service from North Wollongong.
Last month, the government announce more trains with more carriages would operate on the Blue Mountains line over the weekend as a move to deal with overcrowding.
The Transport for NSW spokesman said a similar effort had already been undertaken on the South Coast line.
“Transport for NSW added additional carriages on the South Coast line in 2014 to help address crowding issues – the majority of peak period services are now eight carriages long,” the spokesman said.
Mr Slockee said the Sunday train was similar to the crowding he has experienced during the afternoon peak on weekdays.
“Afternoon peaks are getting heavier and heavier,” Mr Slockee said.
“I’ve been living in Wollongong and travelling to Sydney for the past 10 years and it’s getting busier and busier.”
This article first appeared on www.illawarramercury.com.au
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