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Article: Rail timetable riles public

Started by ozbob, April 03, 2008, 14:51:29 PM

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From Courier Mail click here!

Rail timetable riles public

Rail timetable riles public
Article from: The Courier-Mail

Neil Hickey

April 03, 2008 11:38am

QUEENSLAND Rail was yesterday hailing the success of an extra train on one of Brisbane's busiest lines but it may take more than that to win back the faith of the travelling public.
Following overwhelming dissatisfaction over the new timetable which took effect Monday, a 15th morning service yesterday began operating on the Ferny Grove line.

The extra train left at 7.26am right in the middle of peak period and right in the middle of a formerly service-less 20min period that had left commuters fuming.

As many as 60 commutes had been left behind at the Enoggera station on Monday, readers said.

The general manager of passenger services, Andy Taylor, said the feedback from commuters on the Ferny Grove line had been encouraging.

"I'm delighted to report that the service we put in place has effectively bridged the gap in the timetable and I'm confident this was the main source of the overcrowding, Mr Taylor said in a statement.

"I am very pleased that no commuters were unable to board their services; in fact there were also some spare seats available on some peak lines."

QR has also pledged to review the performance of the timetables first week and make changes where needed.

But despite the promises, commuters continued to inundate the couriermail.com.au with complaints about the suburban rail network.

As well, a rail advocacy group today said the situation had reached "crisis point.

A spokesman for the Rail Back on Track, Robert Dow, said QR should look at a short term solution of free travel before 6.30am to break up the peak period crush.

"The other week I assisted a schoolgirl who had fainted on an overloaded suburban train as it arrived at Roma St," he said.

"We have also had reports of commuters being forced to actually terminate their journey and leave trains due to them being unable to tolerate the cramped conditions."

By mid morning today, the comments to our online forum had exceeded 350, almost all of them negative.

The criticism was broad, ranging from the cleanliness of the carriages to the inadequacies of the timetables.

"It's not only in the morning that there are problems on the Ferny Grove line," wrote Jill Linden.

"For Windsor commuters, there is now a train at 5.03 (too early for people who finish work at 5) then not another one until 5.27 - not happy!"

Neil of Sherwood had a similar beef.

"There is a half-hour gap at Sherwood, Graceville and Chelmer from 6.17 to 6.49. There is a 20 minute gap through the same stations from 7.59 to 8.21. Off peak we have 15 minute gaps," he said.

"Go figure!"

QR says it is confident the new timetable which features an additional 1525 seats during peak periods will satisfy commuters once they become familiar with the new timetable.

The office of Transport Minister John Mickel would not comment on QRs troubles, saying it was an "operational matter and that the minister was only returning home from a trade mission today".
Half baked projects, have long term consequences ...
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