Ballarat commuters were left frustrated after peak hour V/Line services were cut again this week, with animal strikes and maintenance blamed.
On Friday, the 5.10pm service from Southern Cross to Wendouree was halved to three carriages - this was announced at 3.40pm.
Five more service changes for Friday evening trains were then announced, with some only travelling to Melton instead of Bacchus Marsh.
It's so last minute so there's nothing you can do about it - you see this an hour before you have to leaveTravis, a regular Ballarat commuter
The 5.10pm service and 4.54pm service have been common targets in the last week and a half to run with reduced carriages - at least 11 of those two services since last Wednesday have been halved or cancelled.
One regular commuter, Travis, who asked not to use his surname, has been keeping a close eye on the statistics since September.
He has taken the train to work back and forth to Footscray from Ballarat for four days a week since 2013.
On Friday, he said he was glad to be working from home after the chaos across the past week.
"It's obviously really frustrating, it's so last minute so there's nothing you can do about it - you see this an hour before you have to leave," he said.
"If you're already doing 12 hour days - I'm not complaining, that's part of commuting - but when you add the extra hours on, it's frustrating, and it's families that are affected as well."
A V/Line spokesperson confirmed trains hitting animals was among the causes.
"V/Line would like to apologise to passengers whose services ran with fewer carriages than normal due to a combination of maintenance requirements and animal strikes," they said.
"We work hard to ensure we keep passengers moving when less trains are available."
Trains that are involved in animal strikes require deep cleaning and inspections before they are returned to service, and the only cleaning facilities are in the city.
This is not the first time this problem has affected the Ballarat line.
It was noted a higher than normal number of trains required maintenance and repairs this week, which then affects the entire network.
To minimise the number of passengers affected, an attempt at balancing services is made, though there are time when the same service may be impacted on multiple occasions if a high number of trains is unavailable.
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