Friday 20th Sep, 2019

Investigation opened into Perisher railway near miss

Photo: Paddington62 / Creative Commons

Investigators will look into a near-miss between a train and a maintenance worker at Perisher ski resort in southern New South Wales earlier this month.

Around 5pm on July 3, a maintenance worker on the resort’s Skitube railway was forced to move clear of a train set as its brakes were released and it was driven, according to a newly-opened investigation briefing from the Australian Transport Safety Bureau.

There were no passengers on the train, which was being split up from a four-carriage set to a two-carriage set. The train was over an inspection pit on the West Platform at the Bullocks Flat terminal.

The Skitube is a Swiss-designed rack-and-pinion railway, utilising a toothed rack rail between the traditional rails, to help deal with steep grades traditionally seen in alpine regions.

The Bureau is yet to determine what led to the near miss, but said an inspection of the train’s traction motors has commenced.

The investigation will be led by the Office of Transport Safety Investigator (OTSI), which will obtain details from the rollingstock operator, train driver interviews, maintenance worker interviews, radio communication recordings and other sources.

A final report is expected in the fourth quarter of 2019.

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