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Victorian rail regulator backs new train safety system

<p>Victoria’s rail safety regulator has defended the train protection warning system (TPWS) the state wants to introduce after it came under harsh criticism from operator Freight Australia.</p> <p>Yesterday (Monday, July 26) Freight Australia criticised the TPWS as being untried and untested and voiced concerns that it might clash with systems in other states.</p> <p>Director of Public Transport Safety Graham Edkins told <em>Lloyd’s List DCN</em> that independent analysis had already been done on the system and confirmed it was the most suitable for the regional fast rail.</p> <p>"We don’t just plonk any old system on to the railway," Dr Edkins said. "This is the best [system&#93 for Victoria for compatibility."</p> <p>The TPWS had been quite successful in the UK and was recognised for the role it had played in reducing the severity of a number of safety incidents.</p> <p>"That’s reason alone to put in a system," he said.</p> <p>Dr Edkins said he was surprised that Freight Australia had made its comments now when the it had been invited to comment on it in December 2003.</p> <p>They operator "had no significant safety concerns with the system back then", he said. </p> <p>In contrast to Freight Australia, the regional fast rail operator V&#47Line has been quite supportive, he said.</p> <p>And as the TPWS is only being proposed for the regional intra-state broad gauge network there was no issue with interstate operators, Dr Edkins said.</p> <p>"It doesn’t have any bearing on the standard gauge network," he said.</p> <br />