More than 300 of the V/Line workforce have been required to isolate after five positive COVID tests were detected in among V/Line drivers and operational staff.
Coaches will continue to replace the majority of V/Line services today although a limited number of morning peak services on the Ballarat and Bendigo lines will continue, as well as a full service on the Seymour line to support essential workers needing to travel to and from Melbourne.
All remaining services will replaced by coaches across the day.
Passengers are asked to check the V/Line website and social media before they start their journeys for the latest travelling information.
Contact tracing will continue throughout the night and V/Line is doing everything they can to operate more trains throughout the day if possible.
Replacing most trains with coaches will allow for services to continue to operate, giving passengers certainty and helping to contain the outbreak.
Coaches will operate to a 30-minute frequency on the Geelong line, a 30-minute frequency during the morning and evening peaks on the Ballarat line and every 60 minutes across the rest of the day.
The Gippsland and Bendigo line replacement coaches will operate to a 60-minute frequency and all coach replacements for long-distance services on the Warrnambool, Ararat, Maryborough, Swan Hill, Echuca, Shepparton, Albury and Bairnsdale lines will depart to the normal timetable.
Customers should allow up to an extra 90 minutes for their journey.
V/Line’s COVIDSafe plan has a number of general contingency plans for different types of service disruptions, allowing it to modify services and put alternate transport options in place quickly whenever services are disrupted, including due to a COVID-19 exposure.
A number of controls have been in place during the coronavirus pandemic to keep drivers and passengers safe, including physical distancing requirements and measures in common areas, mandated mask wearing, QR codes, additional cleaning, temperature testing for staff, encouraging good hygiene practices, as well as regular communications with our staff about working in a COVID-safe environment.
V/Line and the Department of Transport are working closely with the Department of Health to support the V/Line staff and are exercising an abundance of caution in the interest of our crews and passengers.