Showing stories from January 2014

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Residents allowed to return home after smoky North Dakota rail crash

Posted Wednesday, 1 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

Mandatory evacuation orders were lifted on Tuesday in Casselton, North Dakota, where a fiery oil train crash a day earlier triggered a series of blasts and forced residents from their homes. The 106-car BNSF Railway Co oil train struck a derailed grain train on Monday afternoon about a mile west of Casselton, a town of 2,300 people.

Best new rail journeys for 2014

Posted Wednesday, 1 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

[color=#282828][size=1][font=georgia, 'times new roman', times, serif][size=2][font=arial, helvetica, sans-serif]"Rail holidays of the world" says the banner on the website of [b]Ffestiniog Travel[/b] (01766 772030; [url=][color=#234b7b][/color][/url]), sister company of the narrow-gauge Ffestiniog Railway and runner-up in the rail tours category in the 2013 [i]Telegraph[/i] Travel Awards.[/font][/size][/font][/size][/color] [color=#282828][size=1][font=georgia, 'times new roman', times, serif][size=2][font=arial, helvetica, sans-serif]This year, to mark its 40th anniversary, the company is offering a rail holiday that goes [i]round[/i] the world, or at least a sizeable part of it, with transport including the Tsar's Gold private train and stops scheduled everywhere from the Gobi Desert to New York. The full trip, with first-class tickets wherever possible, lasts 40 days and costs £19,695 per person sharing. Too long? Too dear? You can book a sector: London to Moscow, for example, returning by plane, costs from £4,060.[/font][/size][/font][/size][/color]

Pipeline projects unlikely to slow flow of oil by rail

Posted Thursday, 2 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

[color=#000000][size=1][font=Garuda, Verdana, Geneva, sans-serif]After a third major oil-train inferno in six months, it’s only natural to get swayed into thinking that approving more pipelines will remove such dangerous risks to people and property. It won’t, though.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=1][font=Garuda, Verdana, Geneva, sans-serif]The oil industry is well past the point of being able to choose between railways or pipelines. Production is rising from the Alberta oil sands and North Dakota’s Bakken, and with each new barrel comes a new problem of getting it to market. For better or worse, pipeline approvals or not, it appears the oil trains will run.[/font][/size][/color]

Bradken trains in asbestos breaches

Posted Thursday, 2 January, 2014 by bevans in Rail News

NEWCASTLE-based engineering giant Bradken is under fire for importing heavy-rail locomotives containing deadly asbestos from China. The locos are quarantined at Rutherford, as Australian Customs and Border Protection officials investigate the breach of a 10-year ban on the import of products containing asbestos.

Actor jumps on board Coffs' rail anniversary

Posted Thursday, 2 January, 2014 by The Man in Blue in Press Releases

WELL-KNOWN actor, television presenter and rail enthusiastScott McGregor has been appointed patron of Coffs Harbour's Centenary of Rail.

Rail Lobby Group support station re-opening

Posted Thursday, 2 January, 2014 by Blinkey in Victorian Rail News

Rail Revival Alliance says that the re-penning of Talbot Railway Station is  a small step in the right direction to implementing the State governments promised Rail Revival. The state government has promised the re-introduction of passenger rail services between Bendigo, Ballarat and Geelong

Darwin to Adelaide rail line reopening delayed after freight train derailment near Pine Creek

Posted Thursday, 2 January, 2014 by bevans in Northern Territory Rail News

It has taken longer than expected for the operators of the Darwin to Adelaide railway line to clear the track and minor damage following a derailment on Monday. Genesee & Wyoming sent a crew from Darwin to Union Reefs near Pine Creek to repair the track and recover a damaged locomotive, and expected the line to reopen yesterday. The company now believes the track will be open again late tomorrow afternoon.

Efficient rail services are necessary for train travellers

Posted Friday, 3 January, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

[color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]THE evolution of passenger rail services in the past 10 years shows that despite significant investments in rail infrastructure, travel times continue to inch longer.[/font][/size][/color]

Eye in the sky could watch over jumbos to prevent rail track deaths

Posted Friday, 3 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

Rattled by 17 elephants being mowed down to death by a speeding train in Jalpaiguri district in West Bengal two months back, the railways and environment ministries have decided to consider deploying unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to prevent such tragedies. Collaborating with them in this effort to save jumbos are the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), with IIT-Kanpur suggesting the use of UAVs to track elephant movements near rail tracks and warn train drivers in the vicinity to slow down.

Canadian Pacific Rail to sell west end of its Dakota, Minnesota & Eastern line

Posted Friday, 3 January, 2014 by JimYarin in International Rail News

[color=black][size=1][font=verdana, arial, helvetica, sans-serif]Canadian Pacific and Genesee & Wyoming Inc. announced today that they have executed an agreement pursuant to which CP will sell the west end of its Dakota, Minnesota & Eastern line to G&W for continued rail operations.[/font][/size][/color] [color=black][size=1][font=verdana, arial, helvetica, sans-serif]The west end encompasses approximately 660 miles of CP's current operations between Tracy, MN and Rapid City, SD; north of Rapid City to Colony, WY; south of Rapid City to Dakota Jct., NE; and connecting branch lines, as well as trackage from Dakota Junction to Crawford, NE, currently leased to the Nebraska Northwestern Railroad (NNW).[/font][/size][/color]

New Sunshine train station concourse has opened as part of Regional Rail Link project

Posted Friday, 3 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

THE new pedestrian concourse at Sunshine train station is officially open. The concourse is one of several changes at the busy station, which is being rebuilt as part of the $4.8 billion Regional Rail Link project. Perforated screens designed by local artist Martine Corompt have been incorporated into the concourse, depicting the diverse indigenous plant life of the area, including the Sunshine Diuris orchid. Footscray - Deer Park Alliance General Manager Brad Jackson said the new concourse was a key stage in the station's transformation.

Calif. bullet train in limbo after legal setbacks

Posted Friday, 3 January, 2014 by JimYarin in International Rail News

[color=#333333][size=2][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Officials overseeing California’s $68 billion high-speed rail project have taken pains in recent weeks to assure the public that construction plans are moving ahead, characterizing a series of recent setbacks as “a bump in the road.”[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=2][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]That optimism comes despite recent court rulings against the project, creating confusion about the bullet train’s prospects.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=2][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]A Sacramento County judge rescinded the rail authority’s funding plan, forced it to show how it will pay for the first 300 miles of construction and rejected a request from the authority that would allow the state treasurer to sell $8.6 billion in bonds.[/font][/size][/color]

How Corpses Helped Shape the London Underground

Posted Friday, 3 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Railway Stories

As Mexico City archaeologists sort through the surreal array of [url=]Aztec sacrificial skulls recently uncovered while excavating their city's subway system[/url], it's worth remembering that parts of the London Underground were also tunneled, blasted, picked, and drilled through a labyrinth of plague pits and cemeteries. In her excellent and morbidly fascinating book [url=]Necropolis: London and Its Dead[/url], author Catharine Arnold describes in detail the subterranean presence of corpses found throughout the British capital. To no small extent, she makes clear, dead bodies were basically buried everywhere, to the point that, as Arnold pithily states, "London is one giant grave."

Woman hit by train had bypassed boomgates

Posted Friday, 3 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Queensland Rail News

A woman killed by an express train had walked around boom gates and into its path, Queensland police say. It is believed that the woman was running late for a different train that had stopped at Cannon Hill station, in Brisbane's east, and didn't see the express service coming when she walked on to the track. Inspector Joe Jaramazovic says investigations indicate that the woman walked around the traffic barriers in Barrack Road, near the station, after she unsuccessfully tried to push open a pedestrian gate just before 7am on Friday.

Toll and Asciano strengthen rail relationship with North Queensland agreement

Posted Friday, 3 January, 2014 by newsbot in Asciano

Australia’s largest provider of transport and logistics services, [url=]Toll Group[/url] (Toll), has reached agreement for leading rail operator Pacific National Rail (PN Rail) – part of [url=]Asciano Limited[/url] (Asciano) – to take over operation of the North Queensland rail service of the Toll Intermodal business on 1 February 2014. Toll has entered into a 13-year rail haulage agreement with PN Rail that will enable it to continue to service its North Queensland customers.

China to Open High-Speed Rail Link to N. Korean Border in 2015

Posted Friday, 3 January, 2014 by JimYarin in International Rail News

[color=#000000][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, 'Arial Unicode MS', sans-serif]China will open a high-speed rail line to the North Korean border next year, state media said on Thursday, in a sign that China remains committed to boosting trade and economic ties with the isolated, nuclear-armed state.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, 'Arial Unicode MS', sans-serif] [/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, 'Arial Unicode MS', sans-serif]The line, under construction since 2010, will run 127 miles from Shenyang to the border city of Dandong, which faces North Korea across the Yalu River, and will shorten the train journey from 3.5 hours to one hour, the official Xinhua news agency said.[/font][/size][/color]

Aurizon on Track with Transformation

Posted Friday, 3 January, 2014 by newsbot in Aurizon

As part of an Investor Briefing in Sydney today, Aurizon will announce details of the next major phase of the Company Transformation program, outlining a comprehensive Integrated Operating Plan designed to build on and accelerate efficiency, productivity, and cost reduction efforts across the business. The Integrated Operating Plan (IOP) is a key part of the Company’s Transformation program which will unlock the potential of Aurizon’s national footprint within the coal, iron ore and freight supply chains focussing on improved productivity and customer performance. This work has been enabled through previous company initiatives since IPO, including the recent refinement of the functional business structure, greater planning certainty gained from contract renewals/awards and finalisation of senior management changes, in particular the appointment of Mike Franczak as Executive Vice President, Operations.

Rail relief won't last, Metro warns

Posted Saturday, 4 January, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

The $4.8 billion regional rail link will provide just two years' breathing space for commuters on one of Melbourne's busiest train lines when it opens in 2015 before rapid population growth in the outer west sparks a new peak-hour crush. Metro warned the state government almost two years ago that the state's biggest infrastructure project would bring only short-term relief to the Werribee line before congestion begins to bite again in 2017. In a five-year strategic operations plan from 2012, obtained by Fairfax Media through freedom of information, the rail operator said a mix of longer nine-car and seven-car trains would be needed within five years to handle passenger growth on the Werribee line, and that would involve lengthening railway station platforms to 200 metres.

Gheringhap Sightings w/e 4/1/2014.

Posted Sunday, 5 January, 2014 by GheringhapLoop in Gunzelling Reports

There were 68 sightings for the first four days of this year. On day four last year we had recorded 62 sightings. This is eight sightings more that at the same time last year.

Rail inspections rise in wake of major crude-transport accidents

Posted Monday, 6 January, 2014 by JimYarin in International Rail News

After several major train accidents and fires involving crude oil from the fast-growing Bakken field in North Dakota, federal regulators stepped up rail inspections and issued a safety alert Thursday that Bakken oil could be more flammable than other types of crude. The news affected shares of several large Bakken operators, including Oklahoma City's Continental Resources Inc. On a day where all major U.S. stock market indexes also fell, Continental shares were down 4 percent. Shares in EOG Resources Inc. dropped 2 percent.

Sydney public transport fare rises spark criticism

Posted Monday, 6 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Cityrail News

The New South Wales Opposition has accused the State Government of breaking a promise by increasing the cost of transport fares in Sydney without improving the quality of services. From today the cost of an adult weekly train ticket will increase by $1, with increases also hitting single and weekly fares on buses and ferries.

Sydney Trains exceed November performance targets despite major weather events

Posted Monday, 6 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Cityrail News

Sydney Trains exceeded its Peak Punctuality* and On Time Running (OTR) performance target in November despite several major weather events on the rail network.   The Peak Punctuality of 93.5 per cent and OTR of 94.1 per cent in November exceeded the 92 per cent target, but were slightly down on October’s performance of 94.3 per cent Peak Punctuality and 94.7 per cent OTR.

Hope for direct train to Avalon from Warrnambool

Posted Monday, 6 January, 2014 by nozza99 in Victorian Rail News

THE possibility of a direct train trip from Warrnambool to Avalon Airport is a step closer after the state government announced it was looking into the environmental impacts of the planned rail link.

The big issue: Transport

Posted Monday, 6 January, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

The Premier is desperate to redeem his government's record on public transport. So desperate that he starts by citing the Regional Rail Link, an initiative of his Labor predecessors. It was a sad disappointment that the Coalition's only original contribution to this project was an ineffectual review, which upped the budget but failed to remedy genuine flaws such as the lack of RRL platforms at North Melbourne station.

Air-rail links not pie in sky

Posted Tuesday, 7 January, 2014 by newsbot in Rail News

All too often we suspect Australia's transport planning and policy lacks co-ordination and vision. Not since Dr J.J. C. Bradfield gave us the Sydney Harbour Bridge have we had a truly visionary transport planner. It took decades for the bridge to reach its traffic capacity. These days, it does not take long for recently built bridges and tunnels to reach gridlock. It is not only the lack of capacity in modern transport infrastructure that is the problem: the sad reality is there is poor, or nonexistent, co-ordination between different transport modes and infrastructure. We even struggle to co-ordinate ticketing systems. The lack of vision and co-ordination in transport modes and infrastructure comes at a substantial cost to the economy and even people's health. Being stuck in congested traffic is stressful and adversely affects productivity.

Public Transport Victoria reveals plans for additional rail services

Posted Tuesday, 7 January, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

INCREASING the frequency of trains to and from Melbourne has been reiterated as a priority by Public Transport Victoria (PTV) upon completion of the Regional Rail Link (RRL) project.  The news will be comfort to some Ballarat commuters who are currently using  coaches until January 19 while works on the project ramp up over the holiday period.

It’s all change again at Oxford railway station

Posted Tuesday, 7 January, 2014 by JimYarin in International Rail News

[color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, sans-serif]PLANS for the multi-million pound redevelopment of Oxford’s railway station are set to be unveiled early this year.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, sans-serif]This will bring to an end months of discussion over the future of the site off Frideswide Square which some hope will see it become an integrated “transport hub”.[/font][/size][/color] [size=2][font=Arial, sans-serif][color=#333333]Since early last year,Oxford City Council and Network Rail have[/color][color=#333333] been working together to draw up a masterplan for the station and the surrounding area.[/color][/font][/size] [color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, sans-serif]The new station will include extra platforms to accommodate extra services using the planned new links to London Marylebone and Milton Keynes via Bicester, in conjunction with the electrification and resignalling of the Oxford to London route via Didcot.[/font][/size][/color]

Rail works add extra time for commuters

Posted Tuesday, 7 January, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

COMMUTERS are dealing with the longer travel times while further Regional Rail Link works get underway. The current works mean commuters are taking coaches adding extra time to the regular commute.

Wickham to act as crossing point for Newcastle light rail line

Posted Tuesday, 7 January, 2014 by newsbot in Tram and Light Rail News

[color=#000000][size=2][font=Georgia, Utopia, Palatino, 'Palatino Linotype', serif]Wickham has been chosen as the location to boast a fully accessible interchange as part of the first stage of the Newcastle light rail line.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=2][font=Georgia, Utopia, Palatino, 'Palatino Linotype', serif]The announcement by the NSW Government was made over the Christmas break, but the Government is yet to determine where the light rail will travel between Wickham and the beach.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=2][font=Georgia, Utopia, Palatino, 'Palatino Linotype', serif]“This is about providing the first stage of a light rail system for Newcastle – connecting people to prominent, vibrant areas of the city centre, such as the Honeysuckle precinct and Hunter Street, and encouraging ongoing investment,” says Minister for Planning and Infrastructure Brad Hazzard.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=2][font=Georgia, Utopia, Palatino, 'Palatino Linotype', serif]Two potential short-listed light rail routes include the rail corridor and Scott Street to near Newcastle Beach at Pacific Park, or Hunter Street and Hunter Street Mall to near Newcastle Beach at Pacific Park.[/font][/size][/color]

Dutch railfreight company to cease operations

Posted Tuesday, 7 January, 2014 by newsbot in International Rail News

[color=#444444][size=2][font='Palatino Linotype', 'Book Antiqua', Palatino, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif]DUTCH logistics company Husa Transportation has announced it plans to withdraw its open-access railfreight operations, claiming its financial results are not good enough to justify the continued operation of its own freight trains.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#444444][size=2][font='Palatino Linotype', 'Book Antiqua', Palatino, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif]Husa's rail transport companies, Husa Transportation Railway Services (HTRS) Nederland and its German subsidiary HTRS Süd, will cease operations by March 1 and are being offered for sale.[/font][/size][/color]

VIC Regional Rail Link reaches milestone

Posted Tuesday, 7 January, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

Victoria’s [url=]Regional Rail Link (RRL)[/url] is progressing on schedule, with the project reaching a major milestone, according to the state government. Public transport minister Terry Mulder said the opening of platforms 15 and 16 at Southern Cross for Bairnsdale, Geelong, Traralgon and Warrnambool line trains means the first package of work for the RRL is over.

Work to start this month on Laos rail link

Posted Tuesday, 7 January, 2014 by JimYarin in International Rail News

[color=#444444][size=2][font='Palatino Linotype', 'Book Antiqua', Palatino, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif]CONSTRUCTION is expected to begin this month of a 220km railway in southern Laos from Savannakhet on the Thai border to Lao Bao on the border with Vietnam following a groundbreaking ceremony on December 18.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#444444][size=2][font='Palatino Linotype', 'Book Antiqua', Palatino, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif]The double-track electrified standard-gauge line will be built by Giant Consolidated, Malaysia, which is part of the Giant Group based in Malaysia but incorporated in the British Virgin Islands. The contract for the $US 5bn project was signed at a ceremony in the Lao capital Vientiane in November attended by the prime ministers of Laos and Malaysia.[/font][/size][/color]

Close-up: Theo Taifalos, V/Line

Posted Tuesday, 7 January, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

[color=#262626][size=1][font='Helvetica Neue', Arial, sans-serif]Theo Taifalos is Chief Executive of [url=][color=#000000][font='Helvetica Neue', Arial, sans-serif]V/Line Pty Ltd[/font][/color][/url], Australia’s largest regional public transport operator.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#262626][size=1][font='Helvetica Neue', Arial, sans-serif]Mr Taifalos has extensive experience in the Australian energy and railway sectors, where he has demonstrated an unswerving commitment to customer service and safe operations.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#262626][size=1][font='Helvetica Neue', Arial, sans-serif]At V/Line, he leads a dedicated team of nearly 1500 employees delivering services to approximately 15 million train and coach customers each year.  The V/Line rail network comprises some 3400 kilometres of rail track and 85 stations and Mr Taifalos is excited to lead V/Line into an new era with the introduction of myki, the Regional Rail Link and the delivery of 40 new V/Locity carriages.[/font][/size][/color]

Rail Safety Conference 2014

Posted Tuesday, 7 January, 2014 by bevans in Rail Events

[color=#000000][size=1][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Rail Safety 2014 will bring together the key national decision-makers to deliver new ideas and develop innovative ways to leverage technology for safer outcomes.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=1][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Since the emergence of advanced train control protection and management systems, technology has advanced with new developments in communication. In order to provide the next generation of safety, Rail Safety 2014 will look to technology for a direction towards a safer network. From data sharing to adding layers of safety with software, the three day event will explore the potential to improve safety through technology while also assessing the risk associated with smart systems.[/font][/size][/color]

High-Speed Train in California Is Caught in a Political Storm

Posted Tuesday, 7 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

[color=#000000][size=2][font=georgia, 'times new roman', times, serif] Gov. Jerry Brown of California is riding into an election year on a wave of popularity and an upturn in the state’s fortunes. But a project that has become a personal crusade for him over the past two years — a 520-mile high-speed train line from Los Angeles to San Francisco — is in trouble, reeling from [/font][/size][/color][url=][color=#666699][size=2][font=georgia, 'times new roman', times, serif]a court ruling[/font][/size][/color][/url][color=#000000][size=2][font=georgia, 'times new roman', times, serif]that undermined its financing, and from slipping public support and opponents’ rising calls to shut it down.[/font][/size][/color]

Saudi High Speed Rail Project in Construction Phase After Delays

Posted Tuesday, 7 January, 2014 by newsbot in International Rail News

Saudi Railways Organization said the Haramain high-speed link connecting Mecca with Medina is deep into its construction phase after earlier delays which saw the planned opening date slip by a year. The line’s station in Medina is now 52 percent complete, with the Mecca terminal and a stop in Jeddah about a third built and one serving King Abdullah Economic City almost 38 percent done, Wasmi al-Ferraj, director general of expansion projects at Saudi Railways, said at a conference in Riyadh.

Use the rail line for a bike trail

Posted Tuesday, 7 January, 2014 by JimYarin in South Australian Rail News

[color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Like many visitors to Port Lincoln I enjoy riding my bike in the fresh air and scenery of this beautiful part of the world.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]However it is frustrating to see the fantastic opportunity for a Rail Trail between Port Lincoln and Coffin Bay not being taken up. All around Australia local councils are successfully applying for government grants to upgrade disused train lines into shared use walking, cycling and horse riding trails.[/font][/size][/color]

Wages, costs hold back road and rail projects, says business

Posted Wednesday, 8 January, 2014 by bevans in Rail News

HIGH wages and rising costs are preventing Australians from getting new road and rail projects that could lift the economy, according to business leaders who are pressing the federal government to tackle the problem. The surge in construction costs includes a 74 per cent rise in wages and salaries over the past decade just as productivity growth has slowed, sparking a renewed fight over workplace reform. As the peak union body hits back at the complaints, construction companies and peak business groups are warning the "high-cost economy" is depriving the community of the new infrastructure it needs.

Questions over possible rail line near old WA asbestos town

Posted Wednesday, 8 January, 2014 by newsbot in Western Australian Rail News

The infamous asbestos town of Wittenoom in Western Australia is back in the spotlight. The local shire has raised concerns about possible plans by the mining giant Rio Tinto to build a rail line near Wittenoom. The town was closed down in 2007 because remnants of the blue asbestos mined there posed a serious public health risk. Now the local shire fears that the construction of a rail line in the area could leave them open to legal action if workers fall ill.

Daytime services return to Belair and Noarlunga train lines

Posted Wednesday, 8 January, 2014 by JimYarin in South Australian Rail News

[color=#000000][font=Arial, Verdana, Lucida, Helvetica, sans-serif][b]Normal daytime services will return for commuters on the Belair and Noarlunga train lines on Wednesday morning after the completion of extended closures.[/b][/font][/color] [color=#000000][font=Arial, Verdana, Lucida, Helvetica, sans-serif]Services will return from the first departures until 8:00pm for weekday timetables, acting Transport Services Minister Tony Piccolo told 891 Drive.[/font][/color] [color=#000000][font=Arial, Verdana, Lucida, Helvetica, sans-serif]Overnight closures will ensure work can be completed on running and inspecting overhead wiring for the electrification of the lines, with substitute buses completing the night time schedules outside of the train service period.[/font][/color]

ERA calls for grain rail submissions

Posted Wednesday, 8 January, 2014 by newsbot in Western Australian Rail News

[color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]AFTER months of stagnation the Economic Regulation Authority (ERA) has finally launched its investigation into the future of grain freight rail lines.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]The ERA has sought public comment on its determination of costs for certain routes on the railway network, managed and controlled by Brookfield Rail.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Schedule 4 of the Railways Code 2000, requires the Authority to approve or determine floor and ceiling costs for any railway routes subject to third party access requests.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]The consultation is the result of an access proposal request made by CBH to Brookfield on December 10, 2013.[/font][/size][/color]

MinRes rolls out rail plans

Posted Wednesday, 8 January, 2014 by newsbot in Western Australian Rail News

Mineral Resources is set to take the first step on its path to taking control of rail haulage from its Yilgarn iron ore operation, with the miner to receive the first of several hundred Chinese-made wagons in the next few weeks. MinRes managing director Chris Ellison said yesterday the first two wagons were in transit and were likely to arrive for trials within a fortnight. The company rails about 4.5 million tonnes of iron ore a year from its Carina mine, north-east of Southern Cross, under a "hook and haul" agreement with Queensland's Aurizon.

Melbourne schoolboy exposes security flaw in Public Transport Victoria's website

Posted Wednesday, 8 January, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

A Melbourne schoolboy has exposed a security flaw in the website of Public Transport Victoria (PTV), the government authority that provides details about train, bus and trams. Joshua Rogers, 16, says he found the database of people who used the old Metlink online store by chance. The database includes names, phone numbers and credit cards. The teenager says he stumbled across the problem while browsing the website.

Petrie to be the first hub of activity as the $1 billion Moreton Bay Rail Link begins construction

Posted Wednesday, 8 January, 2014 by newsbot in Queensland Rail News

THE Moreton Bay Rail Link will begin major construction around the Petrie area from this month. The works come after representatives from the Moreton Bay Regional Council, Federal Government and State Government turned the first sod on the project at Mango Hill in December.

Murray Bridge CEO trashes transport plan

Posted Wednesday, 8 January, 2014 by JimYarin in South Australian Rail News

THE State Government's transport vision ignores Murray Bridge's place in the bigger planning picture, says council chief executive officer Peter Bond. Mr Bond has slammed the 30-year, $36 billion blueprint for South Australia's transport future, which was hailed by the South Australian Government as changing the way South Australians move and connect when they released it at the end of October.

Deep freeze strands rail, air travelers nationwide

Posted Wednesday, 8 January, 2014 by newsbot in International Rail News

The [url=efaultattr="Amtrak]Amtrak[/url] train slowed to a crawl as it hammered through snowdrifts in an empty stretch of Illinois countryside, delivering thuds and jolts to passengers, until it lurched into a mound big enough to grind its 8,000-horsepower engine to a halt. About 90 miles short of their Chicago destination, passengers ended up stuck on the train overnight, reading books, watching movies on computers and taking what amusement they could from a conductor who cracked jokes over the intercom. Food ran low and some tempers boiled over, but staff kept the heat on, entertained children and even escorted small groups of people outside for smoke breaks.

Hacked site reports boy to police

Posted Wednesday, 8 January, 2014 by X'Trapolis-904M in Other Transport News

A Melbourne schoolboy who exposed serious cybersecurity weaknesses within Public Transport Victoria's systems by hacking its website to unearth a large store of personal data could be charged under the cybercrime act.   Joshua Rogers, 16, [url=]discovered an extensive database[/url] containing the personal details of public transport users in Victoria, using what cybersecurity experts described as a common hacking technique.

Gulf countries could extend rail network to Yemen

Posted Wednesday, 8 January, 2014 by waynes in International Rail News

A proposed $10bn rail network that will run the length of the GCC countries could be extended to Yemen as part of an ambitious plan. Under its initial design, the 2,177 km rail link will run from Kuwait in the north of the Arabian Peninsula down to Oman when completed in 2018. However, the six-nation bloc has now begun a feasibility study into adding an additional 1,400 km of track that will run through the Sultanate to the Yemeni border. Nada Abu Al Samh, a financial analyst at the GCC Financial Secretariat said during a conference in Riyadh that the extension would feature 12 additional stations, Bloomberg News reported.

V/Line trains finish 2013 below target again

Posted Thursday, 9 January, 2014 by oldghan in Victorian Rail News

BALLARAT trains finished the year where they started it, with below par performance results. However, there was an improvement with V/Line getting far closer to meeting the performance target compared with December 2012.

Cracked Wheel, Broken Rail at Canada Derailment

Posted Friday, 10 January, 2014 by JimYarin in International Rail News

Canada's Transportation Safety Board said Thursday a cracked wheel might have caused a train carrying oil to derail in New Brunswick, causing a large fire that continues to burn a day and a half later. Lead investigator Guy Laporte said a crack in a wheel near the front of the train caused the wheel to loosen from the axel, resulting in the derailment of that wheel set. But Laporte said it's too early to determine what caused the train to leave the tracks late Tuesday derailed in the sparsely populated region roughly 20 miles (32 kilometers) from the U.S. border and northern Maine. No one was injured, but about 150 people living nearby were evacuated. A Canadian National Railway spokesman, Jim Feeny, said the company believes a wheel and axle failure is the cause, based on its preliminary investigation. Laporte said they also found a broken rail at the site, where 19 cars and a locomotive derailed. Feeny said the priority is to extinguish the fire in three cars carrying crude oil and liquefied petroleum gas.

Rail link provides transport gateway

Posted Friday, 10 January, 2014 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

THE Central West could become a gateway to the world under a $3 million investment in Bathurst unveiled yesterday. Local grain trading, storing and packing company Grainforce has established a rail terminal and rail link capable of transporting food and fibre from the Kelso silo precinct to Sydney and then Asia.

Latest derailment and fire fans safety concerns posed by oil-by-rail boom

Posted Friday, 10 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

OTTAWA - Yet another railway fire involving crude oil has prompted the chief executive officer of CN Rail to suggest that long-overdue regulatory changes to the tank cars used to transport dangerous goods will be introduced soon. What is being called a controlled burn had been raging for more than 18 hours in northwestern New Brunswick late Wednesday after 17 cars on a CN train — some carrying propane, others crude oil — derailed and caught fire.

Wimmera Intermodal Freight Terminal up and running

Posted Friday, 10 January, 2014 by BigShunter in Victorian Rail News

MORE than 700 containers are moving through the Wimmera Intermodal Freight Terminal each week.

Queensland Rail program stamps out graffiti at Hemmant train station

Posted Friday, 10 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Queensland Rail News

WHEN Alan Hartley noticed graffiti scrawled across a bayside train station he didn't complain about it, he extended an olive branch to the culprits. Mr Hartley, who is station master at Hemmant train station, has been meeting students at the nearby Hemmant Flexible Learning Centre to talk about respect, community and artwork.

India to seek foreign investment in giant, creaking rail network

Posted Friday, 10 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

India will soon invite foreign businesses to help expand its once-mighty but now outdated railways, government sources said, in a move that would mark the opening up of one of the country's last great state-controlled industries. Foreign investors will be allowed to fully own new services in suburban areas, high speed tracks, and connections to ports, mines and power installations, said two senior officials involved in the deliberations. Existing passenger and freight network operations will not be open to foreign investors under the initiative, which seeks to ease bottlenecks that slow travel on the world's fourth-largest rail system. "The plan is to allow 100 percent foreign direct investment in suburban corridors, high-speed train systems, freight line projects implemented through public-private partnership," said an official at the Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion.

Queensland Rail CEO Glen Dawe stands down, replaced by Helen Gluer

Posted Friday, 10 January, 2014 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

JUST months after he was installed as Queensland Rail CEO, Glen Dawe has stood down and been replaced by the State's former under treasurer. Acting Transport and Main Roads Minister Lawrence Springborg released a statement today revealing Mr Dawe had stood down "to attend to personal matters" and would be replaced by Helen Gluer who will serve as acting CEO until a full-time replacement can be found.

Heavily indebted China Railway Corp expected to raise freight rates

Posted Friday, 10 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

China Railway Corporation (CRC) is expected to raise freight rates early this year to relieve its massive debt burden and speed up market-oriented reform in the industry, which it monopolises. However, such a move may further reduce the competitiveness of rail against road freight, which has rapidly overtaken it in market share.

V/Line tracks stolen by employee

Posted Saturday, 11 January, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

A V/LINE employee managed to steal 16 tonnes of railway track from a regional depot before authorities noticed. During the past two years, V/Line fuel cards were pinched from two of its taxpayer-funded cars and used in petrol-buying sprees that cost almost $50,000. One of the cards was used to purchase $31,000 in fuel over 13 days before it was cancelled. Other thefts of V/Line property between September 2011 and June 2013 include 250m of track from Kyneton and 200m of track from Macedon.

Call for Victorian rail upgrade

Posted Saturday, 11 January, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

A $250 million upgrade and standardisation of Victoria’s regional rail freight lines is at the top of the Victorian Farmers Federation’s 2014 election wish list.  VFF President Peter Tuohey announced today that regional Victorians needed crucial transport upgrades to improve efficiency of the rail network.  “We want to see the Coalition commit its next $500 million of its Regional Growth Fund to infrastructure that helps create jobs in agriculture,” Mr Tuohey said. “And Labor needs to make similar commitments.”

Car hit by freight train at Blaxland

Posted Saturday, 11 January, 2014 by michaelgreenhill in New South Wales Rail News

A man is in hospital after the car he was driving fell 10 metres onto train tracks and was struck by a train. At around 9:00 on Friday night, the sedan was travelling on a side road beside the Great Western Highway near Blaxland, when it drove through a fence and fell ten metres onto the tracks.

Australian importer faces fine after asbestos found in Chinese locos

Posted Saturday, 11 January, 2014 by bevans in Rail News

[color=#444444][size=2][font='Palatino Linotype', 'Book Antiqua', Palatino, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif]AUSTRALIAN rolling stock supplier Bradken could face a fine of up to $A 850,000 ($US 756,000) for overseeing the import of two diesel locomotives from CSR Ziyang, China, that were subsequently found to be contaminated with asbestos.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#444444][size=2][font='Palatino Linotype', 'Book Antiqua', Palatino, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif]The locomotives are of the same design as the 10 CSR-class units supplied last year to SCT Logistics subsidiary Specialised Bulk Rail (SBR), in which similar contamination was discovered in October. According to a November report aired on the ABC Television current affairs show 7.30, white asbestos or chrysotile was found throughout the locomotives: insulation around the exhaust and muffler system, around coolant pipes and in the brake exhaust section near the roof of the driver's cab.[/font][/size][/color]

Time to dream other dreams, rail dream is gone

Posted Saturday, 11 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

Not to date myself but, as a very young lad, I trainspotted in England. I still harbour hazy memories of standing on the brow of an old stone bridge watching steam trains racing toward me as I tried my best to get the engine number from the front of the train. Seconds later, I was immersed in a cloud as the train steamed noisily under me. The blended scent of coal, steam and creosote has never left my nostrils or my memory. Leaping ahead to 1978 my passion for trains was revived when I scored a job as a head end trainman for CP Rail in the Alberta prairie barrens. Yepper, that was me up in the cab waving to you as we choked level crossings for longer than intended.

Sydney Trains orders wheel and brake monitoring system

Posted Saturday, 11 January, 2014 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

[color=#444444][size=2][font='Palatino Linotype', 'Book Antiqua', Palatino, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif]SYDNEY suburban rail operator Sydney Trains has awarded DeltaRail, Britain, a contract to supply an automated wheel and brake monitoring system, which will be deployed at various locations around the network as part of its asset condition monitoring strategy.[/font][/size][/color]

Gheringhap Sightings w/e 11/1/2014.

Posted Sunday, 12 January, 2014 by GheringhapLoop in Gunzelling Reports

There were 138 sightings for this week; this is 37 sightings more than last week. On day 11 last year we had recorded 180 sightings. This is 26 sightings more that at the same time last year.

Eurotunnel completes the mobile telephony offer in Channel Tunnel

Posted Sunday, 12 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

Eurotunnel (Paris:GET) and the British mobile telephone operators EE (formed following the merger of Orange and T-Mobile in the UK) and Vodafone have today signed a 10 year agreement to offer mobile services in the Channel Tunnel. Customers of both operators will have access to 2G1 and 3G2 services in the North Tunnel (UK to France)3. Both EE and Vodafone intend to offer 4G data services throughout the tunnel in the future. This will enable passengers of both Le Shuttle and high speed passenger trains to use their mobile phone or tablet device at any point of the journey through the Channel Tunnel. The quality of communication will be equivalent to a call made in Paris, London or anywhere above ground.

Local rail history on the right track

Posted Sunday, 12 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

Some residents’ efforts to preserve the railroad history of Tracy are picking up steam, as the city has been granted a Train Town USA designation by Union Pacific Railroad. Sofia Valenzuela, president of the Tracy Chamber of Commerce, said the city received word from the railroad the week of Dec. 20. “I thought it was very fitting for Union Pacific Railroad to recognize Tracy,” she said. “It brings the history back to the surface — it is very important to preserve the city’s history.” She said the city manager’s office would coordinate the delivery of the official proclamation from Union Pacific Railroad later this year.

Heatwave: Modifications to PM rail services this week affecting all lines

Posted Monday, 13 January, 2014 by bevans in South Australian Rail News

As part of the State Government's extreme heat transport plan, train services will be modified for tomorrow's [color=#000000][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][size=2](Monday) afternoon peak period to minimise disruption to passengers.[/size][/font][/color] Services tomorrow afternoon will run every 15 minutes instead of every seven and Adelaide Metro will run longer trains to ensure no loss of capacity. This plan helps us provide a more reliable service to customers allowing us to conserve train movements and be able to respond faster should there be heat-related issues.

Rail companies Aurizon and Asciano want satnav tracking on trucks to determine road charges

Posted Monday, 13 January, 2014 by bevans in Rail News

Rail companies Aurizon and Asciano want trucks to be charged at rates that better reflect their road use by using satellite technology to track the distances they travel. The listed transport companies claim investment in the country's railways will be hamstrung until heavy vehicles are charged at rates that reflect their use of the roads. Aurizon and Asciano have called for trials of what they describe as ''direct mass-distance location'' charging over the next year. Under the proposed model, global positioning systems and other technology would be used to set charges linked directly to the size of heavy vehicles, the type of road they drive on and the distance travelled. The companies are part of a group that has called for changes to road charges in a submission to the Productivity Commission's inquiry into public infrastructure. Other members are the Australasian Railway Association and the Australian Rail Track Corporation.

Asciano-Whitehaven sign 12-year rail deal

Posted Monday, 13 January, 2014 by bevans in Asciano

Freight rail operator Asciano has entered into a 12-year haulage agreement with Whitehaven Coal that will reduce costs. The company's Pacific National Coal division's agreement with Whitehaven comes into effect this month and expires in June 2026. Per tonnage haulage costs are lower under the new agreement through the use of fewer train services for any given volume, Asciano said in a statement on Monday. Train fleet operations are also more efficient in preparation for full 30-tonne axle load operations, which are due to begin in 2015.

Chinese investors should avoid Britain's rotten egg rail project

Posted Monday, 13 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

[color=#000000][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, 'Nimbus Sans L', sans-serif]According to reports last week, Chinese state companies are eager to invest in Britain's planned HS2 high-speed railway from London to Birmingham, and beyond to Manchester and Leeds.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, 'Nimbus Sans L', sans-serif]They would be better advised to find another use for their capital. Although construction work has yet to start, HS2 shows all the signs of a classic British cock-up in the making.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, 'Nimbus Sans L', sans-serif]One former government adviser says the arguments for building the new line smell so bad, it should called not HS2 but H2S, after the chemical formula for hydrogen sulphide, the poisonous compound that gives rotten eggs their characteristic foul stink.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, 'Nimbus Sans L', sans-serif]Enthusiasts for the project rightly point out that Britain's existing rail network, built in the first half of the 19th century, is struggling to handle the demands now placed on it.[/font][/size][/color]

Sydney train cleaners opt for redundancies

Posted Tuesday, 14 January, 2014 by 9034 in Cityrail News

THE NSW government is accused of trying to privatise Sydney's public transport "via stealth", as it flags redundancies for bus and train cleaning staff. The Rail, Tram and Bus Union (RTBU) says that after three years of "restructures", Sydney's train cleaners have had enough, and more than 60 per cent of staff have applied for redundancies. It says 437 of 713 staff have expressed interest in taking a redundancy, as the government plans to outsource about 35 per cent of its cleaning of the network.

Council rail view blast: Passenger rail good for economy, says train return lobby group

Posted Tuesday, 14 January, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

ADVOCATES for the return of a Mildura passenger train service claim Mildura Rural City councillors did not do their homework before outlining their priorities for 2014. In Saturday’s Sunraysia Daily, Mayor Glenn Milne said council would this year concentrate on lobbying for upgrades to the Calder Highway and Mildura freight railway.

Ageing train system leads to soaring power costs

Posted Tuesday, 14 January, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

Victoria's ageing train infrastructure is costing taxpayers millions in unnecessary power usage and stymieing efforts by the train operator to cut its greenhouse emissions. Metro is the state's second-biggest user of electricity, but its efforts to consume less power are being hampered by Melbourne's antiquated rail infrastructure, including a power-supply system that is more than 90 years old and trains that are close to retirement age. In its 2012-17 strategic operations plan, obtained by Fairfax Media under freedom-of-information laws, Metro revealed it was the state's second-largest greenhouse gas emitter through electricity use. It is understood that only aluminium manufacturer Alcoa consumes more electricity.

Nightmare rail trip to Westmead Hospital for mum and disabled son

Posted Tuesday, 14 January, 2014 by newsbot in Cityrail News

A NIGHTMARE journey from the Central Coast to Westmead Hospital for a mum and her disabled son has highlighted a seriously flawed rail system. Lorraine Elwell of Ourimbah was forced onto public transport when the specially adapted vehicle she uses to transport severely disabled Hunter, 9, was in for repairs. Less than half of the 307 stations on the Sydney Trains network, which includes the Hunter Valley, Central Coast, South Coast and Southern Highlands, are wheelchair accessible. And while the State Government argues it is working faster than the previous Labor government, the Coalition has only managed to add 20 stations to the list of those accessible for wheelchairs and the elderly since it came to power three years ago.

State government pulls up short on details for Newcastle light rail plan

Posted Tuesday, 14 January, 2014 by newsbot in Tram and Light Rail News

WICKHAM residents and business owners are keen for the state government to release more details of its plans for 11 hectares of undeveloped land when its light rail plans are fully unveiled.

Commuters and tennis face delayed as heatwave power outages hit public transport

Posted Wednesday, 15 January, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

COMMUTERS weren't the only ones feeling the heat, with tennis fans forced to walk in extreme temperatures after tram tracks buckled outside the Australian Open. Tennis fans were forced to walk as temperatures hovered over 40C, after tram tracks buckled on the line to the Australian Open. Heat caused chaos for fans with tram tracks severely damaged near Exhibition St, forcing diversions of routes 70 and 70a from 4pm. Fans leaving Rod Laver Arena following Lleyton Hewitt's epic five set lost were forced to walk before shuttle services were introduced.

A 300M section of the Katherine-Darwin rail line has been washed away because of rain

Posted Wednesday, 15 January, 2014 by newsbot in Northern Territory Rail News

[color=#2b2b2b][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]A 300M section of the Katherine-Darwin rail line has been washed away because of rain.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#2b2b2b][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Owners Genesee & Wyoming have issued a statement to the NT News saying:[/font][/size][/color] [color=#2b2b2b][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]"Severe storms associated with recent cyclonic activity in the region, have damaged an estimated 300-metre section of track. Rail embankment has been washed away from the damaged section, making the track impassable. No trains were involved in the incident.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#2b2b2b][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]"The damage is located 26-kilometers south of Adelaide River.[/font][/size][/color]

Adelaide Metro Heat impact update - Wednesday 15 January 2014

Posted Wednesday, 15 January, 2014 by newsbot in South Australian Rail News

The following are a list of services which have been affected due to heat issues around the network.

East-west link panel calls for answers on project

Posted Wednesday, 15 January, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

The authority in charge of the east-west link has not adequately explained the impact the road will have on people during and after its construction, according to the government planning panel assessing the project. The Department of Planning's hearings into the $6 billion-$8 billion project began on Tuesday. Its panel of experts assessing the project tabled a list of 89 questions about the toll road, which the Linking Melbourne Authority must answer within 20 days. Crucially, the Authority must demonstrate to the department that the east-west link - a 5.2-kilometre road that would connect the Eastern Freeway with CityLink - will not interfere with plans for the Melbourne Metro rail tunnel or the Doncaster rail line. Other questions - on the road's impact on air quality, noise, overshadowing of homes and disruption to nearby roads - have also yet to be properly explained, the panel said.

Hundreds stranded as Sydney train derails

Posted Wednesday, 15 January, 2014 by waynes in Cityrail News

Hundreds of passengers have been left stuck on a train after it derailed on a busy Sydney line during the peak hour commute this afternoon.

V/Line prepares for week of heat

Posted Wednesday, 15 January, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

The timetables reflect extended journey times due to trains slowing down as a safety precaution when the temperature is expected to reach 36 degrees or above. The timetables will be in effect until at least Friday January 17 and will apply to Traralgon, Bairnsdale, Seymour, Shepparton, Albury, Swan Hill, Echuca, Ararat, Maryborough, Geelong and Warrnambool trains.

New tram line: City of Sydney council wants extra stop in Surry Hills

Posted Thursday, 16 January, 2014 by newsbot in Tram and Light Rail News

How far should Sydney residents have to walk to get to a stop on the city's new tram line? The issue might not be the most pressing among the city's many transport needs, considering the overcrowded trains, inadequate roads and unreliable buses. But the question of ''stop spacing'' on the new light rail line to the eastern suburbs - and how to resolve the tension between a tram running fast and one that stops where people want it to - is the latest subject of divisions between the state government and councils along the route. The City of Sydney council wants an extra stop considered in Surry Hills. As planned, Transport for NSW will build just one stop on Devonshire Street, adjacent to the intersection with Riley Street.

Gheringhap Sightings w/e 18/1/2014.

Posted Sunday, 19 January, 2014 by GheringhapLoop in Gunzelling Reports

There were 142 sightings for this week; this is four sightings more than last week. On day 18 last year we had recorded 303 sightings. This is 45 sightings more that at the same time last year.

Croc spotting proves toothy OHS issue for Top End rail repair gang in wake of monsoon flash flooding

Posted Monday, 20 January, 2014 by 9034 in Northern Territory Rail News

Workers repairing a Top End railway line damaged in heavy rains have spotted saltwater crocodiles lurking near the track. A 300 metre section of the track between Darwin and Katherine in the Northern Territory was damaged by flash flooding in stormy weather earlier this week.

Massive boost in frequency of southeast Queensland trains

Posted Monday, 20 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Queensland Rail News

Public transport advocates have hailed Monday's introduction of 200 extra rail services in Queensland's south east as a revolution in the state's train travel. The extra Translink services will mean 15-minute frequency on many suburban rail lines, hauling Brisbane and the south east's public transport network into line with many other Australian cities. Commuter advocacy groups have regularly pointed to lack of frequency as a key factor discouraging people from using Brisbane's network of trains and buses. Queensland transport minister Scott Emerson said the new timetables would provide more consistency.

Croc spotting proves toothy OHS issue for Top End rail repair gang in wake of monsoon flash flooding

Posted Monday, 20 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Northern Territory Rail News

[size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][b]Workers repairing a Top End railway line damaged in heavy rains have spotted saltwater crocodiles lurking near the track.[/b][/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]A 300 metre section of the track between Darwin and Katherine in the Northern Territory was damaged by flash flooding in stormy weather earlier this week.[/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]The line, which runs for about 3,000 kilometres between Adelaide and Darwin, has been closed for repairs and is not expected to reopen until the weekend or early next week.[/font][/size]

Vic govt pans ALP all-night transport plan

Posted Monday, 20 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

Labor's plan for 24-hour public transport on weekends in Melbourne is under-costed and unnecessary, the government says. Under the plan, all night public transport will run on weekends from New Year's Eve 2015, with the trial to run for 12 months if Labor wins the November state election. Trains will run on all lines, while extra trams and buses will also ferry people out of the city. There will also be a 2am service to the regional cities of Geelong, Bendigo, Ballarat and Traralgon. But the coalition says it is more important to invest in improving the train network for morning and evening commuters rather than on weekends.

Metro cancels one in 10 trains as commuters feel the heat

Posted Monday, 20 January, 2014 by nae in Victorian Rail News

Metro Trains has again told its passengers to leave work early and travel outside rush hour where possible, as it struggles to keep the city’s trains running well during Melbourne’s extreme temperatures. The rail operator has also cancelled trains on the Sunbury and Craigieburn lines, as fire crews deal with a grass fire in Craigieburn. In a statement, Metro said that, due to Friday’s extreme heat, ‘‘we are encouraging our customers to travel before or after the main afternoon peak where possible, in an effort to make your journey more comfortable’’. Metro Trains cancelled one in 10 of its rail services in Thursday's heat, with a spokesman saying a similar result on Friday as temperatures soar will see Melbourne "come out fairly well".

Napthine rejects all-night transport

Posted Monday, 20 January, 2014 by nae in Victorian Rail News

Premier Denis Napthine has rejected the opposition's plans for 24-hour public-transport as a "high-cost" proposal that Melburnians don't want. Melbourne would trial 24-hour public transport on weekends if the state opposition wins the November election. Trains would run on all lines, while extra trams and buses would also help get people out of the city safely, Opposition Leader Daniel Andrews says.

Sydney's rail shame: How one wheelchair-bound commuter spent a hellish day on city's train network

Posted Tuesday, 21 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Cityrail News

MY day gets off to a bad start at Fairfield station, where there is a lift - but the two pedestrian ramps are too steep for my wheelchair. Next stop is Granville, where a ramp is ready when the train pulls in. However the helpful station staff don't put me in an area designated for my wheelchair. They are supposed to put me on the part of a train where seats fold up, allowing space for wheelchairs. I have to hold on to the pole used by standing passengers.

More Dumb Ways to Die – this time toys

Posted Tuesday, 21 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

Metro Trains is branching out with a range of soft toys based on its Dumb Ways to Die campaign characters as it looks for ways to keep the campaign alive. The toys will sell from $5.99 for mini bears to $99 for something that is probably bigger than your children. The campaign, created by McCann Melbourne, swept the boards at both local and global awards campaigns in 2013, and now its extentions are going beyond a mobile game. Metro General Manager-Corporate Relations Leah Waymark [url defaultattr="Agency" news&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign="Feed:+AdvertisingAge/Agency" news&utm_reader="feedly"]told AdAge[/url] the brand was approached to launch a range of products from T-shirts to TV shows but that it wanted to maintain the “integrity” of the campaign so opted for plush toys.

Metro to collect video evidence of illegal dumpers at Huntingdale

Posted Tuesday, 21 January, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

CCTV cameras will soon be installed at Huntingdale ­station's gravel carpark in an effort by Metro Trains to curb illegal dumping. Last week, the Leader launched a campaign called[url=] This is Rubbish [/url]to force action on the illegal dumping that has plagued the station for years. The land is owned by ­VicRoads, leased by VicTrack, and believed to be sublet by Metro Trains. Metro Trains spokesman Daniel Hoare confirmed permanent cameras would be installed within weeks. "Metro has been in advanced discussions with United Energy to put CCTV cameras on their poles in the next few weeks," Mr Hoare said.

Readers deliver a double shot of criticism over Metro rent hike

Posted Tuesday, 21 January, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

[b]UPDATE: Readers are in a froth after Metro hiked the rent of a Boronia train station barista, forcing him to close his coffee cart at least temporarily.[/b] Business is business, according to some readers, but others labelled it an example of Metro Trains' incompetence. Some comments lambasted Metro for not paying barista Roger Phillips to provide his coffee service, while others sympathised with for Metro for doubling his rent. "They should be paying him for running a service that takes peoples minds off the crappy one Metro provides," Oopster posted. But D replied: "Pay $20 a day to sell loads of coffee and make a nice living? I'd do that. People have seriously run out of things to complain about."

Killer truckie admits falsifying log books

Posted Tuesday, 21 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Other Transport News

A truck driver jailed because he was badly fatigued when he killed another motorist has pleaded guilty to making false entries in his log book. Garry John Mitchell, 57, was convicted of eight charges in Melbourne Magistrates Court and had 10 days of jail time added to the sentence he was already serving for his part in the death of Frank Fialka in September 2010. Mitchell on Monday pleaded guilty to three counts of making false entries in his log book and five charges of failing to take adequate rest in a 24-hour period relating to the days before his truck crashed into the back of Mr Fialka's car on the Hume Freeway in Broadford.

Conveyor for new Hexham rail lines

Posted Tuesday, 21 January, 2014 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

A MONOLITHIC conveyor at Hexham is marking the beginning of new rail lines in the area. The towering structure, built on Sunday using two cranes, will be used to supply material to the site for a $163 million relief roads project.

Crude-oil tankers go off the rails above Schuylkill

Posted Tuesday, 21 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

IT COULD HAVE been worse - a lot worse. None of the seven CSX cars - six of them loaded with volatile crude oil - that derailed on the 128-year-old rail bridge over the Schuylkill between University City and Grays Ferry about 12:30 a.m. yesterday fell onto the busy expressway, which would have risked a fiery conflagration. And none of the oil-laden tanker cars - criticized by experts and environmentalists as too easy to rupture - broke open and spilled into the waterway as they tilted precariously, although the Coast Guard rushed a boat to the scene and placed booms across the river just in case.

Fares 'up 22%' in Labor's trains plan

Posted Wednesday, 22 January, 2014 by Bogong in Victorian Rail News

An election-year row has erupted over the cost of Labor's pledge to deliver 24-hour public transport on weekends, with the Napthine government saying the policy would add as much as 22 per cent to fares. Labor has estimated that the policy, announced by Opposition Leader Daniel Andrews on Sunday, would cost about $50 million for a year-long trial of trains, trams and buses running all night on Fridays and Saturdays. But in a sign that the usual election-year costings debate could have started early, Treasurer Michael O'Brien released an alternative estimate he said was based on information provided by Public Transport Victoria and the Department of Justice. It shows the trial would cost $102.2 million to operate, more than double the Labor estimate. ''This blowout alone would cause a 14.7 per cent across-the-board fare increase to all PTV passengers to pay for Labor's promise,'' Mr O'Brien said. The analysis includes provisions for an extra 530 Protective Services Officers across 212 metropolitan train stations. It estimated this could cost an extra $54 million, because enterprise agreements stipulate PSOs cannot be employed on a part-time basis.

Moscow to be world's leader in rail transport construction by 2015 - mayor

Posted Wednesday, 22 January, 2014 by JimYarin in International Rail News

[color=#000000][size=2][font=verdana][b][size=2][font=verdana]Moscow is expected to become the world's leader in the scope of rail transport construction by 2015, Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin told President Vladimir Putin.[/font][/size][/b][/font][/size][/color] [center][url=][/url][/center] [color=#000000][size=1][font=verdana][size=1][font=verdana]"If the construction of the metro and railways is combined, Moscow will become the world's largest developer of rail transport," he told Putin on Tuesday. [/font][/size][/font][/size][/color]

Fire cuts Mildura rail line

Posted Wednesday, 22 January, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

THOUSANDS of railway sleepers will need to be replaced on the vital Mildura rail line. The important freight link to Melbourne ports has been cut since last Tuesday night. Early V/Line estimates have revealed about 7500 red gum sleepers have been damaged in a fire between Bronzewing and Speed in the far north west of the state. A V/Line spokesman said no signalling equipment was damaged, but up to 7500 sleepers will need to be replaced.

Derailed CN train near Sudbury blocks passenger rail service

Posted Wednesday, 22 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

[color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, sans-serif]A [/font][/size][/color][color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, sans-serif]CN[/font][/size][/color][color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, sans-serif] Rail line near[/font][/size][/color][color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, sans-serif]Sudbury[/font][/size][/color][color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, sans-serif] continues to be blocked, after a trail derailed early Sunday morning, about 80 km north of the city.[/font][/size][/color]

East Perth residents to fight expansion of rail car depot

Posted Wednesday, 22 January, 2014 by bevans in Western Australian Rail News

The Public Transport Authority has been given the green light to expand its city-based rail car depot where trains are cleaned, maintained and stored. The decision by the Metropolitan Redevelopment Authority has outraged East Perth residents who are threatening legal action. They say allowing the PTA to have more stow lines in the area will create more noise, vibration and visual pollution.

Trains every three minutes for Stonnington commuters under Metro plan

Posted Wednesday, 22 January, 2014 by waynes in Victorian Rail News

MORE trains will stop at four Stonnington train stations when the Melbourne metro tunnel is built, the state government has confirmed. Malvern state Liberal MP and Treasurer Michael O'Brien has moved to allay fears commuters who use Malvern, Armadale, Toorak and Hawksburn would had reduced access to train services, when the multi-billion[url=]Metro Rail Capacity Project [/url]is finished. Stonnington Council had expressed concern that local train passengers might be worse off, because Dandenong Line trains would no longer stop at the above stations.

Single line to Upfield worsens north-west rail woes

Posted Wednesday, 22 January, 2014 by waynes in Victorian Rail News

A four-kilometre section of single track railway in a sparsely populated part of Melbourne is causing transport problems all over the north-western suburbs, Metro says. The Upfield railway line, one of Melbourne's quietest, goes from two tracks to one at the end of the line between Gowrie and Upfield stations. The single track section can only accommodate one train at a time, creating a bottleneck that has long condemned Upfield line passengers to 20-minute waits between trains, even as several other lines in Melbourne move towards 10-minute frequency. Metro has called for the single-track section of the Upfield line to be duplicated by 2017, arguing that services on the line should be increased "towards a 10-minute frequency".

Big Boy No. 4014 steam engine leaving SoCal, may disrupt rail service

Posted Thursday, 23 January, 2014 by JimYarin in International Rail News

Rail fans and train lovers will have a chance to say goodbye to Big Boy No. 4014, one of the biggest steam locomotives ever built, when it hits the rails early Sunday for the first time in more than half a century. Modern locomotives will tow the vintage train as it begins the journey from the [url=]Los Angeles County Fairgrounds[/url] in Pomona to Cheyenne, Wyo. [url=,0,2255582.story#axzz2r54yinKI]Big Boy[/url], which earned its name as a freight-hauling giant at 1.2-million pounds, will begin its more than 1,200-mile journey to [url=]Union Pacific's Heritage Fleet Operations[/url] in Cheyenne. The plan is to stop at the [url=]Covina Metrolink Station[/url] at 600 N. Citrus Ave. from 7 to 8 a.m. Sunday where visitors can snap photos.

Mildura rail damage to be assessed, V/Line says

Posted Thursday, 23 January, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

V/LINE expects to know later this week when freight trains will return to Mildura. The important freight link to Melbourne ports has been cut since last Tuesday night after bushfires damaged the line. Thousands of railway sleepers will need to be replaced on the vital rail line, critical to the summer fruit harvest, particularly table grapes. Early V/Line estimates have revealed about 7500 red gum sleepers have been damaged in a fire between Bronzewing and Speed in the far north west of the state.

Bomb probe shuts Craigieburn rail line

Posted Thursday, 23 January, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

A train line in Melbourne's north has reopened as a police bomb squad investigation that prompted the suspension continues. Trains are running on the Craigieburn line, two hours after the line was suspended by the police probe at Kelvin Thomson Park off Cleve Road in Pascoe Vale. A Victoria Police spokeswoman said the Bomb Response Unit had not yet given the all-clear for the area and a bike path running north and south off Cleve Road remained shut but that train services had been able to resume. Police have not said what prompted the investigation.

Surge of activity could see Victoria playing mine host

Posted Thursday, 23 January, 2014 by bevans in Other Transport News

Victoria could soon boast a new commercial iron ore mine amid a surge of mining activity. A combination of increased mineral prices and a supportive state government is driving a rejuvenated local mining sector with hot interest in exploration licences. This week Eastern Iron advised the stock exchange it had moved into the environmental approvals phase for a commercial iron ore mine at Nowa Nowa, 30 kilometres from Lakes Entrance. An open-pit goldmine was also approved this week south of Maryborough, in central Victoria, and in September, Melbourne will host an international mining conference.

Fare evasion drops on Melbourne's trains, trams and buses

Posted Thursday, 23 January, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

Fare evasion on Melbourne's public transport network has dropped to its lowest level in five years, according to figures released on Thursday. Fare evasion across the city's trains, trams and buses dropped below 9 per cent for the first time since October 2008, according to a Public Transport Victoria survey carried out in October. On trains, evasion dropped 1.5 percentage points to 8.4 per cent. On buses, evasion dropped to 11.2 per cent. On trams, evasion fell – over two years – from 20.3 per cent in May 2011 to 8 per cent. [font=inherit][size=1]Advertisement[/size][/font] The figures also show an increase in ticketing infringements, from 132,161 in 2011 to 158,557 last year. Premier Denis Napthine, speaking at a press conference in Docklands to announce Sunday's opening of the $3.5 million Collins Street tram extension, said a number of reasons explained the drop.

Rail line celebrates 10th anniversary

Posted Thursday, 23 January, 2014 by bevans in Northern Territory Rail News

The tenth anniversary of the completion of the Adelaide to Darwin rail line is being celebrated at a ceremony today. The railway to connect the two cities was first conceived of in 1855, and construction began 20 years later. Armed forces used the rail line heavily throughout World War II. At that time, the line still only existed between Darwin and Larrimah, south of Katherine, and between Adelaide and Alice Springs.

Rail Companies Could Use Cheap Natural Gas To Power Trains

Posted Friday, 24 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

Rail companies are hoping to cash in on the U.S. natural gas boom by replacing diesel-burning locomotives with natural gas-burning ones, which could cut fuel costs by 50 percent while reducing pollution.

You won’t believe why the Victoria Line London is currently suspended

Posted Friday, 24 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

The civil engineering team has poured fast-setting concrete into the Victoria Line signalling equipment room and shut everything down

Thousands attend the third Ballarat Beer Festival

Posted Friday, 24 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

A SEA of golden sombreros made their way onto Ballarat City Oval on Saturday. Some had straw hats, others were wearing their bright yellow lanyard drink holders, but all were in search of one thing – beer.

Train return push building up steam

Posted Friday, 24 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

I WRITE in response to our Mayor Cr Glenn Milne’s front page admission in Saturday’s Sunraysia Daily, that council’s 2014 priorities – which exclude passenger rail – will polarise our community. Cr Milne will be aware by now that, not only will the return of our train not go away as an issue, activism to return our train has spread to thousands of people in the MRCC region – that includes a major part of both the Mildura and Mallee electorates – along the Mildura rail corridor, as part of a significant Face­book group Bring Trains Back to the Mildura Line (BTBTML), which has a strong social media presence over two groups and is in the process of becoming a formal incorporated body.

All V/Line users to use myki ticketing system from next month

Posted Friday, 24 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

Ballarat commuters will be left without a choice from next month when regular paper tickets are made extinct on V/Line trains. The final stage of the myki rollout will occur on February 24 with every V/Line commuter now forced to use the troubled ticketing system.

Not towing the line

Posted Friday, 24 January, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

A rail line upgraded at a cost of $7.2 million to provide a more efficient freight route to port still is not up to speed nearly four months after it was opened.

Labor's Bendigo late night bus plan

Posted Friday, 24 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Other Transport News

A 2AM shuttle bus will run from Melbourne to Bendigo on weekends, under a new plan floated by the state opposition. Labor will introduce a late-night public transport trial if it wins the state government election in November.

No new carriages for Warrnambool line

Posted Friday, 24 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

THE state government has no plans to replace Warrnambool’s ageing train carriages, despite some being more than 30 years old.  Newer Vlocity carriages have been running on the Warrnambool line between Geelong and Southern Cross stations in recent weeks.

Train services return for Ballarat commuters

Posted Friday, 24 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

YESTERDAY marked the return of train services for Ballarat commuters.  Buses replaced trains since late December as Regional Rail Link works ramped up over the holiday season.

Residents warned of disruptions to Qld Rail service

Posted Friday, 24 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Queensland Rail News

FRASER Coast residents have been warned that Queensland Rail passenger and freight services have been disrupted after a truck with a cherry picker damaged an overhead rail bridge in Nambour. A Queensland Rail spokesman said all north and south commuter, long-distance and freight services had been suspended.

Tram and car collide in Southport

Posted Friday, 24 January, 2014 by bevans in Tram and Light Rail News

AN elderly Nerang couple have been left shaken after their car became the first to collide with the Gold Coast Light Rail. Just after 11am, the car and tram collided at the intersection of Nerang and Queen Street near the former Gold Coast Hospital site.

Fatality on East Maitland rail line

Posted Saturday, 25 January, 2014 by JimYarin in New South Wales Rail News

11.50am: The Hunter line has reopened with trains running again between Maitland and Thornton. [color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]7.49am: [/font][/size][/color]The Hunter Line remains partially closed between Thornton and Maitland/Scone/Dungog due to a fatality at East Maitland on Friday morning.

Minister Koutsantonis moves on loud bell causing residents angst near Millswood railing crossing

Posted Saturday, 25 January, 2014 by JimYarin in South Australian Rail News

RESIDENTS can finally get some sleep after community pressure has forced the State Government to reduce the volume of an alarm bell at a Millswood rail crossing. Residents had called for urgent action to stop "piercing and distressing" noise coming from the pedestrian crossing, with the bell sounding as many as 100 times a day. The bell was installed at the corner of Fairfax Ave and Cromer Pde in November to alert pedestrians to approaching trains.

Aurizon rail hauls record coal volume

Posted Saturday, 25 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Aurizon

Freight rail operator Aurizon has hauled a record volume of coal. The Queensland-based company on Friday said it had moved 56.2 million tonnes during the December quarter, marking an 11 per cent increase compared with the corresponding period in 2012 and a new record.

Truck stuck on railway bridge

Posted Saturday, 25 January, 2014 by DesL in Other Transport News

A DRIVER was trapped for about half an hour yesterday afternoon after his truck became stuck on a railway bridge at Woy Woy.

Union Pacific: Two locomotives, rail car derail in northeast San Antonio

Posted Sunday, 26 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

Union Pacific and the San Antonio Police Department were called to a train derailment on the northeast side Saturday. The accident happened near N.E. Loop 410, close to the Binz-Engleman Road overpass,  around 6:15 a.m. "Two engines and one rail car did derail," Raquel Espinoza, with Union Pacific Southern Region, told KENS 5.

Gheringhap Sightings w/e 25/1/2014.

Posted Sunday, 26 January, 2014 by GheringhapLoop in Gunzelling Reports

There were 117 sightings for this week; this is 25 sightings less than last week. On day 25 last year we had recorded 407 sightings. This is 58 sightings more that at the same time last year.

Fixing Canada’s ailing rail system

Posted Sunday, 26 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

Canada’s once proud and efficient rail system is one sick iron horse. And it will get sicker without serious intervention. While the rail executives and politicians who oversee it will hotly deny the beast is ailing, there are four obvious wounds that prove it is. First, there are the safety breaches, stretching from the [url=]July 6 derailment and explosion at Lac-Mégantic, Que.[/url], to [url=]CN’s Jan. 7 accident near Plaster Rock, N.B.[/url] Both trains carried dangerous goods and passed through Toronto heading east. Other derailments have heightened public safety concerns.

Victorian government failed to prove case for east-west link, infrastructure umpire finds

Posted Sunday, 26 January, 2014 by bevans in Other Transport News

The state government failed to submit a "robust" business case for independent scrutiny to justify the east-west road link, according to Australia's major projects umpire. Infrastructure Australia has singled out the controversial $6 billion to $8 billion road as a key example of why the public are cynical about about "big-ticket" infrastructure announcements.

V/Line issues safety warning

Posted Sunday, 26 January, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

V/LINE is warning Victorians to take care near level crossings. The warning comes in time for the busy Australia Day long weekend and comes after four near misses between trains and vehicles in the past week.

Crop and shale boom slows American rails

Posted Monday, 27 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

Transportation of wheat and other key commodities across western US and Canada has slowed sharply as a bumper harvest, booming shale oil shipments and severe winter weather have all combined to snarl rail freight movements. The logjam has hit both of Canada’s two major railroads – [url=Canadian National]Canadian National [/url]and [url=Canadian Pacific]Canadian Pacific[/url] – but has particularly affected BNSF, the operator of North America’s second-biggest rail freight network.

Big Boy locomotive begins California farewell tour

Posted Monday, 27 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

POMONA, Calif. -- An enormous [url=]steam locomotive[/url] that has been entertaining train enthusiasts at a California museum for years began a trek of more than 1,200 miles on Sunday with the ultimate goal of putting the engine back on the nation's rails. The 600-ton Big Boy locomotive left the Pomona fairgrounds on its way to a [url=]Union Pacific[/url] rail yard in Colton, about 60 miles away, where it will be available for two weekends of public viewing before moving on to Cheyenne, Wyo., for [url=]restoration work.[/url] The goal is to eventually get Engine 4014 back on the rails, said Union Pacific spokesman Aaron Hunt.

McCloy’s vision: reach for the sky

Posted Monday, 27 January, 2014 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

NEWCASTLE needs to lift ‘‘ridiculous’’ height restrictions, stop worrying about view corridors to Christ Church Cathedral and embrace high-density living in order to become a truly vibrant city, Jeff McCloy says. Addressing an urban regeneration summit yesterday, the lord mayor said he was raising the issue in public for the first time to generate debate in the context of the state government’s urban renewal strategy.

Don rail car vandalised in graffiti attack

Posted Monday, 27 January, 2014 by bevans in Tasmanian Rail News

Volunteers at Don River Railway in Devonport spent Australia Day removing graffiti from a heritage rail car.

Damage bill on way to driver who crashed truck into bridge

Posted Tuesday, 28 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Queensland Rail News

THE driver of the truck which struck a rail bridge and bent the line at Nambour can expect the damage bill in the "hundreds of thousands of dollars". Queensland Rail executive general manager Tim Ripper said the department would pursue the driver responsible for the cost of the damage to rail infrastructure following the incident on Price St on Friday. Meanwhile, a support group for rail and public transport is calling for proper protection for the bridge to ensure any future incidents were not as damaging.

Rail line eases parking woes

Posted Tuesday, 28 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Queensland Rail News

[color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]PARKING issues at Richlands Train Station have eased since the opening of the new Springfield rail line.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Member for Inala Annastacia Palaszczuk said commuters from areas such as Springfield and Camira who used to park at Richlands were taking advantage of the new park-and-ride bay at the Springfield Central Train Station.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]"My office used to receive numerous calls from residents in Inala, Forest Lake and Richlands who were angry about the car parks filling up so quickly," Ms Palaszczuk said.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]"Commuters who lived out further had to come to Richlands because it was the nearest train station to them.[/font][/size][/color]

Rail link works to close Brookhollow Avenue

Posted Tuesday, 28 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Cityrail News

MOTORISTS may do well to steer clear of Brookhollow Avenue, Baulkham Hills, starting next week.

Mail Rail: What is it like on the 'secret' Tube?

Posted Tuesday, 28 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

[color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, Helmet, Freesans, sans-serif][b]Deep under the streets of the capital, a disused railway tunnel stretches for six miles. After being shut for a decade, there are now plans to reopen the London Post Office Railway - known to many as Mail Rail - as a tourist ride.[/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, Helmet, Freesans, sans-serif]In a chilly central London railway depot, it feels as though Mail Rail's workers suddenly upped and left and time has stood still since.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, Helmet, Freesans, sans-serif]Thick dust has settled on discarded orange overalls, safety cones and an abandoned kettle and a musty smell lingers.[/font][/size][/color]

Police hunt for Flinders St Station attacker

Posted Tuesday, 28 January, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

Police are hunting a man who indecently assaulted a disabled woman at Flinders Street station. The 32-year-old disabled woman was attacked near the main entrance to the station on Flinders Street on December 28 around 6.30pm.

The worst travel experience of my life: The overnight train from Bagan to Yangon

Posted Wednesday, 29 January, 2014 by 9034 in Letters to the Editor

WHEN you're a frequent traveller, you're bound to have some ups and downs. However, this overnight train ride from Bagan to Yangon in Burma turned out to be memorable for all the wrong reasons. Vanessa Chiasson, who has ventured around the world and writes at [url=][/url], describes it as the worst travel experience she has ever had ... "The train seemed to be an efficient and economical way to get across the country without losing a precious day of sightseeing to transit and we (Vanessa was travelling with her husband Ryan Wright) were excited to try something new.

Truss talks jobs, rail and dams in the Central West

Posted Wednesday, 29 January, 2014 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

[size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][b]The Deputy Prime Minister, Warren Truss, says there are a number of bottleneck issues to negotiate in the early stages of the inland rail project.[/b][/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Mr Truss visited Bathurst yesterday to meet with the region's mayors and discuss a range of topics such as job losses and the Needle Gap Dam.[/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]The proposed train will run between Melbourne and Brisbane through the heart of New South Wales.[/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Mr Truss says there are significant obstacles to overcome in the Queensland section of the billion dollar rail project.[/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]"There are some critical areas, difficult engineering problems that need to be resolved," the Deputy Prime Minister said.[/font][/size]

Texas exploring high-speed passenger rail

Posted Wednesday, 29 January, 2014 by JimYarin in International Rail News

[color=#333333][size=2][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]DALLAS — A bullet train connecting South Texas to Oklahoma City is a dream Texas is slowly... and cautiously... working to make a reality.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=2][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]On Thursday the Texas Transportation Commission is expected to vote on creation of a [url=][color=#003596]High Speed Rail Commission[/color][/url].[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=2][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Dr. Steve Mattingly, a civil engineering professor at the University of Texas at Arlington, was funded by the Texas Department of Transportation to[url=][color=#003596]study the routes connecting major cities in Texas[/color][/url], including Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston and San Antonio.[/font][/size][/color]

Lift upgrade good news for Blacktown rail commuters

Posted Wednesday, 29 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Cityrail News

[color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Help has arrived for commuters who rely on Blacktown railway station’s lifts.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]A major refurbishment will result in four of the station’s 10 lifts being replaced at a cost of $3 million.[/font][/size][/color]

Queensland Government sign $4.4 billion deal with Bombardier NGR Consortium for 75 new six-car trains

Posted Wednesday, 29 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Queensland Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]A FLEET of new trains ordered by the Queensland Government will be made in India, the Treasurer has confirmed.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Tim Nicholls and Transport Minister Scott Emerson on Wednesday announced they had struck a deal with the Bombardier NGR Consortium to build 75 new six-car trains for a bargain price.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Mr Nicholls said the $4.4 billion deal ensured the government would get "twice the train for the same amount of money" earmarked for the project by the previous Labor administration.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]"For the same price Labor was paying, we're getting an extra three cars per train set so this is a value for money outcome," he said.[/font][/size][/color]

Hong Kong's rail a vision of the North West Rail Link

Posted Wednesday, 29 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Cityrail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]THE state government raised eyebrows and concerns of commuters when it announced that the North West Rail Link will have single deck trains.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]But people who have used the Hong Kong rail system MTR (Mass Transit Rail), which is almost identical to what the North West Rail Link will be, said the NWRL will provide a safer and better experience than the rest of the Sydney rail network.[/font][/size][/color]

Police drop charges against man accused of railway station rape

Posted Wednesday, 29 January, 2014 by waynes in Cityrail News

POLICE have withdrawn their case against a man accused of raping a 17-year-old girl in a Sydney train station toilet block. Police announced charges had been dropped when Ben Kooy, 34, appeared at Burwood Local Court. His legal aid lawyer Patricia Lyden told the court that new evidence had "changed the situation". Mr Kooy told reporters outside court he was relieved. "I'm just glad it's over," he said as he left the court.

Fire engulfs moving train in southeast rail yard

Posted Wednesday, 29 January, 2014 by waynes in International Rail News

A train caught fire while towing carriages at a southeast Calgary rail yard Tuesday afternoon, forcing workers to uncouple the burning engine to contain the blaze. Fire crews were called to the yard at 68th Street and 114th Avenue S.E. about 3:15 p.m. and found the engine engulfed in flames.

Tram catches fire in Melbourne's CBD

Posted Thursday, 30 January, 2014 by newsbot in Tram and Light Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]A TRAM carrying four passengers caught fire in Melbourne's CBD last night.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Fire crews were called to the corner of Swanston St and La Trobe St just before midnight when smoke started to fill a tram outside RMIT University.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Acting Sen-Sgt Mark Van Rooyen said the tram driver quickly stopped the tram and evacuated the passengers, none of whom were injured.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]The driver had noticed sparks starting under the tram before the interior began to fill with smoke.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]"It was really smoking at one stage," Sen-Sgt Van Rooyen said.[/font][/size][/color]

North-west rail link warnings ignored

Posted Thursday, 30 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Cityrail News

[color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]The O'Farrell government was told it would save $200 million from building the north-west rail link with smaller tunnels - a decision that will mean the new line will never be able to run double-deck trains with more seats.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Documents obtained after a freedom of information battle also reveal the lengthy effort inside parts of the transport bureaucracy to warn the government about the major inconvenience to northern suburbs commuters from terminating the $8.3 billion north-west rail link at Chatswood.[/font][/size][/color]

Woman trapped under bus in Sydney's CBD dies

Posted Thursday, 30 January, 2014 by JimYarin in Other Transport News

A woman who was hit by a bus in Sydney's CBD and trapped for two hours on Wednesday afternoon has died. The woman, 53, was taken to Royal North Shore Hospital with multiple critical injuries after the incident on Clarence Street about 3.50pm. However, police said the woman died several hours after she arrived at hospital.

Cootes Transport loses Shell trucking contract following fatal crash

Posted Thursday, 30 January, 2014 by bevans in Other Transport News

The Victorian trucking company involved in a fatal fuel tanker crash in Sydney’s northern beaches late last year has lost a major contract to supply Shell petrol stations across the country. Cootes Transport, a division of the Mark Rowsthorn-chaired McAleese, advised the market on Thursday that it had been unsuccessful in tendering for the contract, which is due to expire at the end of June. BP has also notified Cootes that it has not short-listed it for its fuel transportation contract in NSW.

Moves to improve historic railway precinct display at Bombala

Posted Thursday, 30 January, 2014 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

[size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][b]Work will begin soon to improve the experience for visitors to the Bombala Railway precinct in the New South Wales south east.[/b][/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]The Bombala Shire Council and the Bombala Railway Land Management Committee plan to update existing displays, enhance maintenance and create storyboards to outline the history of the area.[/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]The town's heritage-listed railway infrastructure remains well preserved since the last train ran in 1986.[/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]The Bombala Shire mayor, Bob Stewart, says the project is being completed with the help of more than $14,000 from the State Government.[/font][/size]

CN Rail Cuts Access To Small Businesses: Bill Gates Is The Major Shareholder

Posted Thursday, 30 January, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

In Northern Ontario, a railway runs from Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario to Hearst, Ontario.  This rail line serves a number of small [url=]business[/url] owners and they rely on the railway for access.  The Government of Canada has decided to cut this particular CN Rail line (CNI) and a vital business link could be lost.

Chaos at Huntingdale railway station as commuters regularly parked-in for hours

Posted Thursday, 30 January, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]HUNTINGDALE  railway station's gravel carpark is so overcrowded that drivers park anywhere they can and some commuters have to wait hours at their car ­before they can get out.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]On top of this, in trying to get their cars out, drivers are crashing into other cars and performing dangerous manoeuvres to get back on to the street.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]One commuter is even considering buying a second car to ensure she can pick up her son from childcare when she can't get her car out of the carpark.[/font][/size][/color]

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