Victoria Shadow Minister for Public Transport Terry Mulder
V/Line Hits New Low As 10 Of 11 Lines Again Fail Timekeeping Target
Victor P Taffa
Premier John Brumby’s V/Line has again failed Victorians in July 2010 with 10 of its 11 lines failing to meet monthly timekeeping targets and almost a third of trains on the Latrobe Valley and Ballarat lines arriving at least 6 minutes late, while a similar percentage on the Bairnsdale line arrived at least 11 minutes late, Shadow Minister for Public Transport, Terry Mulder said today.
Mr. Mulder said that Minister for Public Transport Martin Pakula had falsely claimed that Melbourne’s trains were ‘significantly improving’ despite eight consecutive months of late Melbourne trains but he had lately stayed silent regarding Country Victorians’ V/Line train services.
“Minister Pakula knows that V/Line’s performance has deteriorated significantly in the past year despite only a minimal increase in the number of passengers.”
“Trains on the Ararat, Bairnsdale, Ballarat, Bendigo, Echuca, Geelong, Latrobe Valley, Seymour, Swan Hill and Warrnambool lines again failed to meet monthly timekeeping targets in July 2010.” Mr. Mulder said.
“A year ago in July 2009, the worst performing line close to Melbourne in the commuter belt was the Latrobe Valley where 14.3 % of trains were at least six minutes late.
“By July 2010, a shocking 31.4 % of trains to and from the Latrobe Valley were a minimum of 6 minutes late.”
Mr. Mulder said V/Line’s increasingly poor performance was especially noticeable on the Ballarat Line, where year-on-year unpunctuality had risen from 6.4 % in July 2009 to 26.3 % in July 2010, while officially late trains had significantly risen on the Latrobe Valley Line from 14.3 % in July last year to 31.4 % in July 2010.
“On V/Line’s busiest line, the Geelong and Marshall Line, officially late trains climbed from 11.4 % in July 2009 to an unacceptable 16.2 % in July 2010. With many of the unpunctual trains during the weekday peak hours, John Brumby’s failure to invest is making for long trips between Victoria’s largest and Second Largest Cities.”
“V/Line’s disastrous performance comes on top of its trains having been cancelled between Melbourne and Australia’s second-largest inland city, Albury-Wodonga, since 9 November 2008 with an uncertain date for their return due to numerous mud holes in the track converted from broad to standard gauge between Seymour and Wodonga.” Mr. Mulder said.
“Minister Pakula is hiding V/Line’s detailed report of its abysmal performance for a few days until after Saturday’s Federal election, but the ‘bare bones’ of the headline figures for each line vividly tell the story of John Brumby’s failure to meet the transport needs of a Million Victorians who live outside Melbourne.” Mr. Mulder said.