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FRUSTRATED residents say they are being trapped in their driveways for more than an hour by banked-up traffic trying to cross the Frankston line onto the Nepean Highway.
They claim level crossing removal work on the line has been causing chaos at the Station St, Bonbeach crossing.
It’s adding insult to injury for commuters already besieged by bus replacements on rail lines, signalling faults, level crossing works and Metro Tunnel Project works across Melbourne.
Steve Talbot, who lives opposite the level crossing, said since rail work began the boom gates were staying closed for three times longer than usual.
“They used to come down about 60 seconds before a train came through and rise again about 30 seconds after the train had passed,” Mr Talbot said.
“Now they are taking up to 15 minutes to rise. I’ve seen cars waiting for an hour to move through the queue of traffic.”
Mr Talbot said the congestion started on May 4, the day buses started replacing trains between Frankston and Carrum.
“I think the boom gate sequence changed at the same time,” he said.
Members of a local Facebook group also vented their anger.
Alicia Newman posted about being 30 minutes late for an appointment after being forced to do a u-turn to escape the queue.
Brooke Dunleavy saw about 50 cars “backed up past the station trying to turn across the tracks”.
Kel Clarke said she had experienced delays at Carrum.
“A train will set off the first boom gate ... then eight minutes later I’m still there as train after train after train gets priority over road and pedestrians,” Ms Clarke posted.
According to Metro boom gates across the metropolitan train network are triggered automatically by the presence of a train to ensure the safe separation of trains, vehicles and pedestrians.
The termination of trains at Carrum could affect the frequency and duration of the automatic activation.
An equipment fault at Carrum on May 7 caused the gates to be down for extended periods before it was fixed later that day.
Metro spokesman Andrew Nelson said there had been no specific changes to how the boom gates at were operated during the crossing removal works.
“We thank the community for their patience during these important works,” Mr Nelson said.
Buses are replacing trains between Carrum and Frankston and Stony Point until June 17.
This article first appeared on www.heraldsun.com.au
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