Engineering, Environment and Sustainability, Freight Rail

ARTC plans ‘mega’ holiday maintenance

Rail track. Photo: Shutterstock

The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) is preparing for a ‘mega maintenance shutdown’ in North East Victoria, the Riverina and Southern Highlands over the Christmas and New Years break.

65 projects will make up a package of essential rail upgrades between Melbourne and Sydney, the ARTC said, with $6 million in works planned over a four day stretch from December 27 to 31.

“This time every year we take the opportunity to deliver a large package of maintenance work when fewer trains are running after the Christmas freight rush,” ARTC executive general manager for interstate Peter Winder said.

“We do this to get the maximum amount of rail maintenance done efficiently in the safest possible environment for our people as well as minimising impact on everyday operations.”

Rail maintenance tasks will include rail grinding, ballast resurfacing, re-railing, upgrading rail turnouts, track undercutting, drainage maintenance and technical jobs like signalling work.

Roughly 600km of track will be worked on.

Track reconstruction work will take place within Junee, Moss Vale and Goulburn railway yards. The Bethungra level crossing (Olympic Highway) will be upgraded. Major repairs will take place at on the Spring Street underbridge at Moss Vale, and more underbridge repairs will take place in Tallong.

Almost 500 metres of track undercutting will also be delivered in various locations in North East Victoria from Craigieburn to Seymour, the ARTC outlined.

“We would like to get wide awareness of this work taking place, so the community knows what is happening around their neighbourhood and can ask us questions to find out how they are affected,” Winder continued.

“We know this period is a time when families are visiting and travel to different events is regular, so we want as many people as possible to know about what is going on, when.

“Around $6 million worth of work will take place in this shutdown, which is an important part of making sure we continue to run the safest possible network and maintain high reliability levels for our customers.”

The bulk of the work will take place between December 27 and 28 at the Victoria end of the corridor, and between December 29 and 31 in NSW.

The ARTC says most work will be during day time hours only, but some track machine and major work packages will require night work.