Just one day after V/Line released it had recorded its most punctual month in almost two years, commuters have again been severely delayed.
Trains will be delayed by up to an hour on Thursday morning due to a signal fault between Deer Park and Rockbank.
Signal faults have been rectified and services are back to normal running. Residual delays will impact services up to 40 minutes. Service change and delay information will follow shortly.— V/Line Ballarat Line (@vline_ballarat) October 10, 2018
The fault was rectified about 7.30am but will have residual effects throughout the morning.
All the early morning trains have been affected.
Visit the V/Line website for more information.
The delays come after V/Line has recorded its most punctual month since December 2016, with 89.6 per cent of services on time throughout September on the Ballarat line.
And if it wasn’t for a few instances where people got on the line, the figures could have even been better according to the authority.
But while the services ran well throughout September, for early morning commuters yesterday that was cold comfort after being squashed into three carriages due to staffing issues on the 6.38am service from Wendouree.
Passenger Catriona who contacted The Courier said passengers were being packed like animals into the three carriages. “This is a total disgrace. It is squashed bodies with no room to move,” she said.
“People expect this in major European and Asian cities not in regional Victoria.
“Why do we pay for a public service if we get this as a service? A high speed train won’t fix anything, capacity and consistency is what commuters need.
“The daily rate is $43 dollars for a day pass and not to be guaranteed a seat is a disgrace.”
A V/Line spokesperson said a staffing issue caused the train to run short.
“This service normally operates as a six-carriage VLocity but on this occasion, there was only one staff member available to prepare the three-carriage train in time before departure to ensure it still operated,” the spokesperson said.
“Because it is a busy service, V/Line organised one backup coach from Ballan and three at Bacchus March to ensure passengers could still get to where they needed to go.
“The reduced capacity was communicated about 30 minutes beforehand through the V/Line website, social media, announcements, text messages and email. We apologise to customers for the reduced capacity. Safety is our first priority and trains won’t depart if it is not safe.”