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Hunter rail commuters will have to catch buses or make other transport arrangements to get to their destinations this week with a three-day track work program in full swing.
Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) has 1300 workers on board for the maintenance program.
Maintenance works will be carried out on the main line between the port at Kooragang and Narrabri, and on the Ulan line from Tuesday, November 19 to Friday, November 22.
The works will involve 125 projects to help deliver a safe and reliable rail network from the port at Kooragang and along the rail corridor to Werris Creek, as well as the Ulan line west from Muswellbrook.
ARTC Group Executive for the Hunter Valley, Jonathan Vandervoort, said maintenance works along the network include re-signalling at Thornton, a level crossing upgrade at Army Road at Glenridding and track reconditioning work at Quirindi.
"The Ardglen Tunnel will also be re-sleepered and re-railed. This is an interesting job as it is a heritage listed tunnel and we have to take those considerations into account while undertaking the works," Mr Vandervoort said.
"We will also take advantage of the opportunity to undertake a number of works including removing ballast and improving drainage on this section.
"With tunnels you need to be very efficient as the conditions are difficult to work in and to you need to be very organised to get all the works done in the allotted time."
He said to ensure the rail network continues to operate efficiently and safely, a shutdown on the network will be in place.
"Similar to other recent maintenance programs, a scheduled shutdown is required to allow us to access the track for maintenance and upgrades that cannot be done safely when trains are running," he said.
This article first appeared on www.maitlandmercury.com.au
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