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RAIL officials apparently told passengers on the 6.43am CountryLink Canberra to Sydney service on Friday that “technical problems” were responsible for it failing to make Goulburn.
It in fact had hit a mob of sheep near the Komungla Siding, Currawang, about 20km south of Goulburn.
Those aboard the train at time were apparently told the hold-up between Tarago and Goulburn stations was due to a technical matter.
But Goulburn station staff later told frustrated passengers who had to wait about two hours for a replacement coach that it had ploughed into some 80 sheep, apparently hitting at least 30 of them, “A lady on the train told me that it had to stop and head back to Tarago because they told her it had experienced technical problems,” a passenger, who boarded the replacement coach at Goulburn, said.
“But we only found out about the sheep later after talking to station staff.
“It ended up being a bit of a farce. We had no choice but to wait for the coach that came at 10.30am. The train was supposed to arrive at 8.19am.
“An elderly lady waiting with us was forced to cancel a medical appointment in Sydney.”
The train was able to move south back to Tarago Station where the passengers were put onto a coach and taken to Goulburn Station.
At Goulburn more coach transfers were arranged to take customers to their destinations.
The incident caused a delay of up to 120 minutes for the affected 86 passengers.
“At about 8.14am Friday May 10 the 6.43am CountryLink Canberra to Sydney service struck a large flock of sheep that were on the tracks near Tarago Station,” a RailCorp spokesman eventually told the Post on Saturday.
“The impact damaged the train and as a result it was unable to complete the remainder of the journey to Sydney.
“The damaged train was later towed empty by the 11.55am Canberra to Sydney service from Tarago back to Sydney for repairs.”
The Post has been informed that sections of the Canberra to Goulburn railway line are an unfenced rail corridor but it is not known whether this was the case for the area where the sheep were hit on Friday morning
This article first appeared on www.goulburnpost.com.au
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