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A record 12 million travellers have taken Victorian regional rail services in the past year, as drivers left the car at home and piled on to trains - creating overcrowding problems on the most popular routes.
The number of people catching V/Line train services has increased by almost 10 per cent in the past year alone, figures to be released in the regional operator's annual report this week show. Public Transport Minister Lynne Kosky said the growth showed that upgrading tracks and reducing fares had pushed up country train patronage.
The biggest growth in train use was in Gippsland, where the Traralgon and Bairnsdale line had a 15 per cent increase.
Ms Kosky acknowledged there was crowding on rail lines to Ballarat, Bendigo, Geelong and Traralgon.
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