AusRAIL, Market Sectors

Rail lobby calls for action on rural branch lines

<p>The Railway Technical Society of Australasia (RTSA) has called on the Federal Government to &#8220urgently&#8221 make a commitment to investment in regional rail infrastructure.</p> <p>Welcoming the <em>Great Freight Task</em> report, handed down by the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Transport and Regional Services on Monday, August 13, RTSA government relations spokesman Andrew Honan said action on the report’s findings was urgent.</p> <p>&#8220Our regional rail links are in crisis,&#8221 Mr Honan said.</p> <p>The Inquiry found that the role of railway branch lines remained unresolved. </p> <p>The report found that the closure of these lines and the movement of grain to road transport solved one problem but created another &#8211 the capacity and upkeep of country roads. </p> <p>&#8220The RTSA welcomes the recognition the Committee has given to strengthening the planning and engineering capability guiding the development of integrated transport solutions,&#8221 Mr Honan said.</p> <p>&#8220We are also pleased to see the report go further in advocating the nation-building Inland Rail route proposal and supporting major rail deviations for our interstate main lines as a necessary response to the daunting freight task facing Australia.</p> <p>&#8220It is now imperative for the Government and opposition to make a serious commitment to the future of Australia’s regional rail infrastructure through action on both policy and funding.&#8221</p> <br />