Public Transport Victoria forum hears call for more Maryborough train services
State Government Commits to Developing Rail Infrastructure for Victoria
Horsham residents to be quizzed about future use of dormant rail corridor land
No choppers here: Malcolm Turnbull takes the train to Geelong
Opposition Leader Matthew Guy backs Melbourne Airport rail link
Jail time for train threats to Vline Staff
Premier Daniel Andrews hears efforts to address Central Goldfields disadvantage, push for more Maryborough trains
The Inland Rail Link Melbourne to Brisbane a Similar Case as the RAA's Bendigo - Geelong Rail Link
North-West Rail Alliance urges more council support amid push for return of Mildura passenger rail
Grampians Rail Trail: Shire calls for community to step up and manage facility
The victims of one of Victoria's worst rail disasters will be remembered today at a memorial service to commemorate 10 years since a truck collided with a V/Line train just north of Kerang.
The service at the Kerang Memorial Hall will bring together the victims' families, dignitaries and locals to remember the crash.
A V/Line train heading from Swan Hill to Melbourne was sheared open when it collided with a truck at a level crossing just north of Kerang.
Eleven people, including several children, were killed and many more were injured.
Dozens of local people helped in the aftermath.
Julie McMonnies' husband Geoff and daughter Rose were among those killed in the crash.
"Ten years is a long time and people still are hurting and still want to remember," she said.
"We have a large crowd of family and friends that want to be with us on that day, and because we're in Kerang that's where they will be to share the day with us, and to remember."
The pair were on their way to Melbourne with another of the couple's children, Sharise, ahead of a planned trip to Hamilton Island.
"Rose was 17, and playing netball and a fun-loving girl, who like her father was a bit of a joker and liked a bit of a prank," she said.
"She was always happy and smiling and laughing as Geoff was, so we will all remember the huge presence that they were in our lives."
A plaque will be erected at the site to remember the victims of the crash.
Ms McMonnies said there had been a lot of discussion over the years about how to mark the tragedy in a public way.
"It probably wasn't a bad thing that time was taken to make sure that the right thing was placed there," she said.
"I think there needed to be something there, it was a very significant tragedy, it impacted a lot of people in many ways, not just the people who died but the people who were injured and their families and friends.
"Also a lot of emergency workers were affected by that day and members of the general public who went to assist were affected."
Rail safety a decade onTwo years after the incident, the truck driver, Wangaratta man Christian Scholl, was later found not guilty of culpable driving charges.
"I will never forget the impact of that day on the lives of so many. My thoughts are with those families. I am so sorry," he said in 2009 outside the court.
A coroner's inquiry held in the wake of the crash led to a series of recommendations to improve the safety of trains, trucks and level crossings.
In response, safety was upgraded at crossings around Victoria and measures such as rumble strips were introduced.
The Australian Trucking Association's Bill McKinley said in the years since Kerang, the number of crashes at level crossings had fallen.
He said the heavy vehicle industry had also made improvements to maintenance and regulation, and the penalties for breaches of standards would increase next year.
"Getting all of that together takes a bit of time, but the result we've got to is a good one and the regulator — the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator — is holding seminars across the eastern states now on what the new law means," he said.
But Amadeo D'Aprano from the Rail, Tram and Bus Union said improvements could still be made.
"We as the union will always continue to fight for further improvements to be made in level crossings as they are inherently dangerous," he said.
"So long as there are level crossings, safety will always be a concern."
This article first appeared on www.abc.net.au
About this website
Railpage version 3.10.0.0037
All logos and trademarks in this site are property of their respective owner. The comments are property of their posters, all the rest is © 2003-2017 Interactive Omnimedia Pty Ltd.
You can syndicate our news using one of the RSS feeds.