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V/Line has contacted the newsroom, saying initial repair works are done on the illegal excavation near Wyndham Vale train station. It means trains on the Geelong line will no longer be delayed by speed restrictions and can travel at the usual pace. *** An illegal excavation next to the Geelong-Melbourne train line could have caused a potentially-deadly derailment, according to rail officials. The deep pit was only discovered after a V/Line driver reported a rough ride over a section of track near Wyndham Vale. Horrified V/Line staff found the pit had been left open, causing it to flood, which in turn allowed the tracks to subside. The organisation's Chief Operating Officer, Carol-Anne Nelson, said the excavation had the potential to cause a serious accident. "If an express train had run over this section of line, there is a very real chance it could have derailed," Ms Nelson said. An official investigation is now underway and city-bound trains have been ordered to slow to 40km/h through the damaged section of track. "Our crews need to rebuild this section .. from the ground up," Ms Nelson said. "It's a costly exercise, and has already caused frustrating delays for passengers on the Geelong line." V/Line said the unsafe excavation was not part of any works by its employees or contractors and the stretch of track was not included in the newly-completed 10-day Easter works program. "We're calling on developers, contractors, building or excavation crews working near rail lines or adjacent property to always put safety first, and talk to V/Line before starting works," Ms Nelson said.
This article first appeared on www.bay939.com.au
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