Showing stories from March 2014

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Too many loads on our roads when rail is the answer

Posted Saturday, 15 March, 2014 by waynes in Rail News

[color=#383838][size=3][font=helvetica, arial, sans-serif]“Without trucks, Australia stops” is now a fact of modern life. But when all costs are considered, road freight is an expensive way of moving large amounts of freight. And, as shown by ongoing fatal crashes involving large trucks, road freight can also be dangerous.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#383838][size=3][font=helvetica, arial, sans-serif]The main beneficiaries of road freight are not the truck drivers who work hard in a dangerous occupation, but the companies that choose to consign large quantities of freight by road. Road freight has seen strong growth, in part, due to good service levels and major road improvements that include highways with dual carriageways and concrete pavements, climbing lanes, and town bypasses. Over the past 25 years, road upgrades have allowed for the introduction of larger trucks such as B-doubles.[/font][/size][/color]

Rail planning calls for big-picture approach

Posted Sunday, 16 March, 2014 by waynes in New South Wales Rail News

[color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]PROVISION of community infrastructure is rightly a focus for all three levels of government but often attention is given to projects that are not priorities.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]It is time to think about the long-term transport needs for the wider Hunter Region, not just those for inner-city Newcastle.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]A vast amount of money continues to be directed to major road upgrades that channel more cars and trucks into our urban areas, including the Hunter Expressway, Newcastle Inner City Bypass and Golden Highway upgrades.[/font][/size][/color]

Gheringhap Sightings w/e 15/3/2014.

Posted Sunday, 16 March, 2014 by GheringhapLoop in Gunzelling Reports

There were 138 sightings for this week; this is 19 sightings more than last week making a total of 1285 sightings for this year to date On day 74 last year we had recorded 1221 sightings. This is 64 sightings more that at the same time last year.

Railway goods line reborn as New York-style high line

Posted Sunday, 16 March, 2014 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

Pedestrians should be able to walk the first section of Sydney's version of New York's ''High Line'' by the end of the year with construction due to start this month. But the latest plans for the goods line walkway - a redevelopment of a little-used rail corridor between Central station and Darling Harbour - show it is expected to be much more than a pedestrian thoroughfare. Pop-up bars, cafes, performance stages, ''study pods'' and electronic screens are all planned to line the border of the goods line, a 500-metre stretch linking Central with Haymarket, Ultimo and Darling Harbour. The line - part of which will consist of raised walkways - is to be built in two stages.

Ten of the world’s best train journeys to experience

Posted Sunday, 16 March, 2014 by bevans in Rail Events

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]FROM the frozen wastes of Siberia to our own backyard there are plenty of adventure train journeys to satisfy even the most jaded traveller, writes Brian May[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Mark Smith is a British train buff and travel writer known as ‘The Man in Seat 61’ who has travelled the world’s finest trains, always in seat 61.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]“A great train ride is that triple combination of the scenery outside the train, the experience inside the train and the people you meet and things that happen on that specific trip which make it memorable,” Mark Smith says.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]“Flying has lost its glamour, it’s time to rediscover real travel by train where the journey itself is an adventure.”[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]So don’t just watch the train go past, jump on and go on an adventure to remember.[/font][/size][/color]

New Zealand DL Locomotive Testing Results Received

Posted Monday, 17 March, 2014 by bevans in New Zealand Rail News

Laboratory testing of samples taken by an independent tester indicates that no airborne asbestos fibres or asbestos dust has been found to be present in 33 of the 40 Chinese built KiwiRail DL locomotives.  Chief Executive Peter Reidy says results from the rigorous testing show no immediate risk to health, and the report contained recommendations outlining a process for managing and removing the asbestos containing material.  “This is positive news.  Our immediate priority is staff safety, and this vindicates our joint decision to withdraw the locomotives from service until we had a clear pathway for moving forwards.

High-speed rail to take Kochi-Kasaragod route

Posted Monday, 17 March, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

[color=#3b3a39][size=2][font=Georgia, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif]The high-speed rail corridor project proposed by the State government between Thiruvananthapuram and Kasaragod is likely to be revamped in the wake of the Union government’s plan to extend the Bangalore-Coimbatore high-speed rail project to Kochi.[/font][/size][/color]

High-rise railway developer on track for local projects

Posted Monday, 17 March, 2014 by bevans in Rail News

[color=#333333][size=4][font='Times New Roman', sans-serif][b][b]JAY Walder readily concedes that putting up a 50-storey apartment building over a train station won't be everyone's answer to funding significant infrastructure development.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=4][font='Times New Roman', sans-serif]As chief executive of Hong Kong's rail operator, Walder routinely oversees such projects. It suits one of the most densely populated cities and biggest users of public transport, but it's not for everyone, Walder admits.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=4][font='Times New Roman', sans-serif]However, that hasn't stopped international cities -- Melbourne and Sydney among them -- beating a path to MTR's door in the quest for workable solutions to the expensive problem of financing and sustaining rail development in some of the world's biggest cities.[/font][/size][/color]

Bid for Central West Rail Trails gathers steam

Posted Monday, 17 March, 2014 by JimYarin in New South Wales Rail News

[size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][b]Momentum is building for the development of rail trails in the Central West.[/b][/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Rail trails are disused train routes that can be used by walkers, cyclists and horse riders.[/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]There are currently rail trails on lines that were publicly operated and only a few around Newcastle on lines that were privately used by coal companies.[/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]A Parliamentary Inquiry has just recommended the government allow disused rail corridors in New South Wales to be opened up for such use.[/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Liberal MLC, Natasha Maclaren-Jones, who chaired the inquiry says the committee believes rail trails have tourism potential but its now up to the Government to consider the recommendation.[/font][/size]

Driver's tramline mishap won't change light rail safety efforts

Posted Monday, 17 March, 2014 by newsbot in Tram and Light Rail News

[size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][b]The CEO of the consortium operating the Gold Coast light rail says drivers will be completely safe if they follow road rules around the new lines.[/b][/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Aan 88-year-old woman drove onto the tramlines at Southport and then 60 metres onto the Sundale Bridge, with one wheel on the line and the other on concrete a foot below, on the way to a hairdresser appointment.[/font][/size]

Would-be palm reader pleads guilty to V/Line sex attacks

Posted Monday, 17 March, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

A man has pleaded guilty to indecently assaulting young women on V/Line trains as they travelled between Bendigo and Melbourne. Ajay Chopra, 41, pleaded guilty to three counts of indecent assault and two charges of attempted indecent assault in the County Court on Thursday after deciding overnight against having his case go to trial. Chopra approached five women, aged between 20 and 30, between February 1 and August 17, 2011 and either indecently assaulted them or tried to. Previous court hearings were told he approached the women offering to read their palms.

Mudslide slows BNSF rail service north of Seattle

Posted Monday, 17 March, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

A mudslide late Sunday night has temporarily cut rail service on BNSF tracks north of Seattle. BNSF spokesman says the slide of mud, trees and debris struck about 11 p.m. between Seattle and Edmonds.

Twenty rail cars derail, block road at Wedron

Posted Monday, 17 March, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

[color=#000000][size=2][font=Verdana, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif]More than 20 rail cars carrying sand derailed in Wedron near Wedron Silica at about 9:50 a.m. Sunday, blocking County Highway 21 and for part of the morning prevented traffic from crossing the Fox River bridge from Wedron toward Route 71.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=2][font=Verdana, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif]Serena firefighters and Sheridan ambulance crews responded, and had left the scene before 11 a.m., said La Salle County Sheriff’s Cpl. Dave Woolford.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=2][font=Verdana, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif]La Salle County deputies remained on the scene and, as of 11 a.m., were waiting for Illinois Railway (the Illinois Rail Net company) to get a crew to clear the crossing.[/font][/size][/color]

S. Africa rail firm in 'biggest ever train order'

Posted Tuesday, 18 March, 2014 by JimYarin in International Rail News

Johannesburg (AFP) - South Africa's state-owned rail freight firm Transet said Monday it was ordering more than 1,000 new trains, in what it hailed as the country's biggest single corporate infrastructure investment. The total order of 1,064 locomotives was worth 50 billion rand (3.3 billion euros, $4.7 billion), Transnet said in a statement.

Level crossing removals fuel hope for Rowville rail link from Huntingdale

Posted Tuesday, 18 March, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]THE State Government’s multi-billion-dollar rail ­announcement has reinvigorated calls for a Rowville rail link from Huntingdale Railway Station.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]The link would run from Huntingdale to Rowville and include three new train stations in Monash.[/font][/size][/color]

Traveller satisfaction improves as V/Line works on reliability

Posted Tuesday, 18 March, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

CUSTOMER satisfaction on V/Line trains has improved, however it still sits far below figures achieved in 2006.  The Public Transport Victoria results show 86 per cent of customers are satisfied and covers the services between October and December.

Abbot Point rail line concerns for surrounding community

Posted Wednesday, 19 March, 2014 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

[color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]HIGH rents, tight labour pool and rough roads.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]It doesn't sound like a fun place to live, and it kind of sounds familiar, but according to Australia Institute researcher Mark Ogge that will become the reality for communities near the soon-to-be built Abbot Point rail lines.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Mr Ogge will be among the speakers at a workshop for landholders in Clermont on Monday.[/font][/size][/color]

CQU research will help boost rail manufacturing industry

Posted Wednesday, 19 March, 2014 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

[color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]THE Federal Government has pledged at least $31 million to bolster Australia's rail manufacturing industry, and CQUniversity will be a key research provider.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]A new rail manufacturing co-operative research centre will draw on CQUniversity's expertise in software and instrumentation used for train condition monitoring, and the regional uni is also well placed to use simulation to test new designs of railway components.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]CQUniversity's rail research group was a key partner in the research centre bid and was involved in bid preparation and the final interview.[/font][/size][/color]

Costly airport express rail link for Badgerys Creek sure to test state-federal relations

Posted Wednesday, 19 March, 2014 by JimYarin in New South Wales Rail News

A separate express train line would be needed if people were to travel by rail to a Badgerys Creek airport, not a simple extension of Sydney's existing train system, says one of the authors of the major study in support of the airport site. The Abbott government is poised to announce its support for a Badgerys Creek airport in western Sydney within weeks. Determining who pays for the transport links to the airport is almost certain to emerge as a source of tension between the federal and state governments before the airport is built. But Peter Thornton, a former general manager of infrastructure at the engineering firm WorleyParsons who worked on a federal-state study into the airport site, says a rail line to the airport may not be required for many years. But if a line were built, he said, it would need to be an express service and not a simple extension of the south-west rail link that runs close to Badgerys Creek.

Aurizon confirms north Qld redundancies

Posted Wednesday, 19 March, 2014 by newsbot in Aurizon

[size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][b]Rail company Aurizon says it has made a final decision on job cuts in four regional towns in north Queensland.[/b][/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]About 50 jobs will go from depots in Townsville, Charters Towers, Hughenden, Cloncurry and Mount Isa.[/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]The company says it is in the process of telling workers about the decision.[/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]The Rail Union's Les Moffitt says the company has offered voluntary redundancies to 21 people working at the Townsville's national operations service centre.[/font][/size]

Patrick Stevedores handed millions of dollars for Port of Melbourne hold-up

Posted Wednesday, 19 March, 2014 by newsbot in Asciano

Waterfront operator Patrick Stevedores has been secretly handed $18.5 million to compensate for disruptions caused by the expansion of the Port of Melbourne. The Maritime Union of Australia is furious, claiming the secret deal underpins a taxpayer-funded push to casualise the port workforce. In a report to the Australian stock exchange, Patrick's parent company, Asciano, last week confirmed it had received the payment because of the early termination of its lease at Webb Dock, an area of the port that is being redeveloped. Patrick has already announced that as part of the redevelopment it will be offering redundancies to its 260-strong stevedoring workforce. The union says 80 jobs are likely to be lost with 73 per cent of the remaining workforce being employed as casuals.

5 reasons fast trains have an Aussie future

Posted Wednesday, 19 March, 2014 by newsbot in Rail News

[color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]What goes up must come down. At least in the case of airplanes, that's true. But as airplanes keep going up, so do greenhouse gas emissions – these emissions stay in the atmosphere and do not come down.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]High speed rail, on the other hand, is on the up and up, and can run without contributing to greenhouse gas emissions. Europe has had high speed rail since the 1960s. China, Japan and Korea all have high speed rail. India has this year announced it is investigating the feasibility of building high speed rail.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Australian governments have for over 30 years toyed with the idea of building a high-speed rail line on the east coast, and there are finally moves underway to set aside the corridor in which a system could be built. This follows the previous federal government’s $20 million high speed rail implementation study which found a significant economic benefit to Australia returning $2.30 for every $1 invested.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Think-tank Beyond Zero Emissions has just completed a two-year study into HSR in Australia which shows that rail can not only dramatically reduce transport emissions, but also be built for $30 billion less than the most recent government study.[/font][/size][/color]

Tenders called for to reopen Cowra rail lines

Posted Wednesday, 19 March, 2014 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

[color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Minister for Roads and Ports Duncan Gay today announced the NSW Government is calling for tenders from the private sector to reopen the ‘Cowra Lines’, 200 kilometres of non-operational rail lines between Blayney and Harden, and Koorawatha and Greenthorpe.[/font][/size][/color]

Time to Deliver: ARTC takes rail freight message to ALC Forum 2014

Posted Wednesday, 19 March, 2014 by JimYarin in Rail News

ARTC will be promoting the benefits of rail in a ‘Making Rail Freight Work’ session at the [url=]Australian Logistics Council’s Forum 2014[/url] to be held on March 19-20 at Royal Randwick in Sydney. Session chair, John McNamara, general manager marketing and customer relations ARTC will reinforce the economic and social benefits of expanding rail freight’s share on the east coast corridor. “ARTC is focused heavily on improving rail freight’s reliability and capacity and reinforcing to our customers the economic, environmental and safety benefits of rail freight – issues which I look forward to highlighting as chair of the ‘Making Rail Freight Work’ session at the ALC Forum,” McNamara said.

Louise Koenig’s trip from Bruce Springsteen’s AAMI Park gig to Macleod a ‘comedy of errors’

Posted Wednesday, 19 March, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]BRUCE Springsteen fan Louise Koenig’s great night soured when her trip home from a concert on public transport turned into a “circus act”.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Ms Koenig left from Melbourne’s AAMI Park on February 5 and finally opened the front door of her Macleod home just after 2am.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]“It was a comedy of errors,” she said.[/font][/size][/color]

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