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Unions are demanding a guarantee that trains in the Geelong line will not be contaminated by toxins from tainted soil that could be dumped beside the tracks at Wyndham Vale.
The Andrews government has triggered an angry community backlash after a secret proposal to use the new V/Line stabling yards at Wyndham Vale as a "temporary back-up" site for toxic soil that has brought work on the West Gate Tunnel to a standstill.
The powerful Rail, Tram and Bus Union has now written to state treasurer and member for Werribee Tim Pallas expressing fears for the safety of staff and passengers on the Geelong railway line.
The letter asks whether a risk assessment has been conducted in relation to short and long-term impacts and when a final decision will be made.
"Could you confirm that this soil will not contaminate the air conditioning systems of the Geelong-Melbourne trains which run directly alongside the site?" the letter reads.
"The proposed asbestos and PFAS-laced soil dump poses a huge risk to workers on the Wyndham Vale site, along with residents in the area more broadly."
It concludes: "We stand ready to fight to protect our members from this dangerous toxic dump."
The letter is signed by RTBU Victorian Branch Secretary Luba Grigorovitch.
If workers boycott the new stabling yards V/Line will face the prospect of mass cancellations, bus replacements and higher operating costs, especially on the Geelong line.
This article first appeared on www.bay939.com.au
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