AusRAIL, Market Sectors

ATSB to investigate Cleveland crash

<span class="" id="parent-fieldname-description"> Queensland transport minister Scott Emerson says the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) will be called in to investigate a serious incident last week that saw a Queensland Rail Citytrain service fail to stop at Cleveland station and career into the station building. </span> <p>Australia’s transport safety investigators will provide a preliminary report within a month into the train crash on Thursday January 31 at the Bayside terminus station of Cleveland station which saw 14 people suffer minor injuries.</p><p>The train travelled 10 metres inside the railway station, demolishing a toilet block in the process and bringing down approximately 300 metres of overhead power lines.</p><p>The ABC reported Queensland Fire and Rescue staff at the scene had to wait about an hour for power to be disconnected before passengers could leave the train.</p><p>Train services were replaced by buses between Ormiston and Cleveland, but were restored in time for this Monday morning’s peak. <br />Emerson says it could take three months to investigate the cause of the crash.</p><p>“I’m concerned that a full investigation will take more than three months, so I’ve ordered an interim report within one month,” Emerson said.</p><p>“The ATSB is a federal investigatory body and it is appropriate they review this matter and deliver their interim findings to passengers and the state government.</p><p>“The ATSB will also provide a full report and recommendations to the government at a later date. At this stage it is too early to speculate on a cause however, I want to ensure we get the best advice on this incident in timely manner.”</p><p>Queensland Rail advised the train carriages involved received their last full inspection on January 9 and no issues were reported at other stations during the trip from Doomben prior to this incident.</p><p>Citing previous safety concerns over the braking capabilities of the 160 and 260 class railcars similar to those involved in the crash the Rail Tram and Bus Union (RTBU) ordered its members not to drive these models that make up a third of QR’s commuter fleet.</p><p>A hastily arranged meeting of Fair Work Australia found there was no evidence to support claims the trains were unsafe and ordered the union to cease their bans for two months so the ATSB investigation into the crash could take place.</p><p>Subsequently, lawyers for the RTBU have indicated the union will lodge an appeal against the ruling after saying the union had received dozens of calls from drivers concerned over the safety of the trains.</p>