Victorian public transport minister Jacinta Allan says the Andrews Government’s new contract with Metro Trains Melbourne will ensure regional passengers get a fairer deal, while more level crossing improvements on the Warrnambool line came as another piece of good news for V/Line passengers.
Allan said the freshly-inked Metro Trains Melbourne contract, which comes into force on November 30, will demand tighter performance targets for delays and train management on the metropolitan network, in turn allowing for better management of shared track, benefitting regional trains.
A 37% increase in maintenance funding will benefit shared sections of the metropolitan network, adding further value for regional passengers, the minister said.
“All passengers deserve reliable and punctual services – no matter where they live,” Allan said. “The new contract with Metro will deliver better maintenance in areas where regional and metropolitan services share the track.”
Allan had more good news for regional rail passengers on Tuesday, saying four more level crossings on the Warrnambool line have now been upgraded as part of a $10 million investment to boost safety and reliability.
V/Line crews installed boom gates, flashing lights and axle counters at three level crossings in Terang, and a fourth in Birregurra.
“Upgrading these crossings will boost safety for locals, passengers and motorists, and make trains more reliable,” Allan said. “We’ve already upgraded 14 crossings on the Warrnambool line, and the remaining eight will be completed by the end of the year – allowing temporary speed restrictions to be progressively removed.”
Speed restrictions have been in place on the line following a 2016 collision between a Warrnambool-bound train and a truck at a level crossing in Yallock.