Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Hot Days = Slow Trains


Well just when the hot weather strikes we have the 'reduced speed' restrictions. Yet again I question whether this is actually necessary on a brand new track between Werribee & Corio that is obviously constructed with modern methods that reduce the risk of 'sun kink'. Maybe it is the sparks from poorly maintained carriages/engines that could start a fire beside the tracks if they do more than 90 km/h on a day like today.

Either way, what it means for commuters is a longer journey home - and you can bet your bottom dollar that air conditioning on some carriages will not be working and services will be cancelled due to locomotives not working (even the new V'locity's!)

My only dilemma is do I aim for the early 4.40pm or work back late to catch a train after 8pm when it will be slightly cooler and a faster run home (even if the services are stop all stations at that time).

Mehhh .... :)


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Its been a while, I need to whinge, and this seems like the place to do it.

1- Fast trains seem to give way to sheep these days. First the 5:04 Ballarat train had to slow to 50kmh for a sheep crossing, then it had to stop completely because it cleaned up a few of them.
Why weren't sheep tracks built under the rail tracks to start with, and since when does a fast train need to stop for hitting livestock?
(Maybe it was something more serious than that, but it certainly appeared to be the case, and no apology/explanation was offered by the conductor for the delay)

2. - Blinds/Curtains/Tinted Windows.
Its still a major annoyance that these supposedly new trains are hampered by sun glare for the passengers (Especially reading papers/working on a laptop)when the old red carriages they replace have sensible items such as curtains.
The train drivers do seem to be treated to blinds.
Whats the point of upgrading to new trains if they aren't better for the passenger. (And in this case they appear are worse than the 20 year old carriages)

3. Colour scheme? What colour scheme? Is Vline red, orange, or silver purple and green?
Surely its more professional to paint all the trains in the same scheme, no matter which pattern was chosen.

4. Southern Cross - North Melbourne.
Its just unacceptable that the trip from North Melbourne to Southern cross can take 10- 15min on some journeys (Much of it stationary).
And Southern Cross to Sunshine can take 24 minutes.

I have actually found that If I'm running late for the 5:04 to Ballarat (As I often am), I will miss the train if I disembark the Sandringham Met train at Southern Cross , but I will always catch the train if I get the next Met train through to North Melbourne.
The Vline train is so slow from Southern Cross to North Melbourne, that the Met train will always beat it, even if the Vline train has already departed.

5 Signal Faults
When the signals got knocked out last week Betwen Ballarat and Melbourne, all commuters were put onto buses (Which was a considerable effort, and well done to the poor conductor who copped an earful of abuse from an older gentlemen about the whole situation).
But is there no manual backup when the signals go down?
Could a reduced number of (Larger) trains, running at reduced speed, be run up and down the line, instead of transferring passengers to coach?

1/3/07 9:18 pm  

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