Wanted: drivers for Metro Tunnel

More than 100 new drivers are now being recruited to operate additional train services when Melbourne’s new Metro Tunnel opens a year ahead of schedule in 2025.

Up to 120 new drivers will undergo an intensive 44-week training program to ensure they’re ready to operate the 65 new and bigger trains that will run through the Metro Tunnel.  Training includes a mix of classroom, practical and on-the-job training, where the trainee drivers are accompanied by a trainer while operating passenger services.

As with any new infrastructure, additional training will be provided to qualified drivers to allow them to drive in the new tunnels. This will include training on the project’s next-generation signalling system and the use of platform screen doors – a Victorian first.

Recruitment for up to 180 operational staff including driver trainers, line and system controllers, signallers and signal maintenance technicians is also underway.

Work has also started on helping passengers navigate the new network, with the development of new network maps and marketing and communications materials to support customer journeys.

Construction on the Metro Tunnel is progressing well, with crews preparing for the start of track laying in the new twin tunnels in the coming months. Some 20 of the 65 new high-capacity trains are already running on the network and test trains will start running through the tunnels next year.

Tracks will be laid at State Library Station in coming weeks, working towards the western tunnel entrance in Kensington. Once that section is completed, they will return to State Library Station and continue laying rail towards the eastern tunnel entrance in South Yarra.

The Metro Tunnel will slash travel times by up to 50 minutes day and create capacity for more than a half a million extra passengers each week in the peak by creating a new end-to-end rail line from Sunbury in the west to Cranbourne/Pakenham in the south-east, with bigger and better trains, and five new underground stations.

To apply to be a driver, visit bigbuild.vic.gov.au/metrotunnel.

Premier Daniel Andrews said test trains would running on the Metro Tunnel next year, “and we need more than a hundred drivers to be ready when we open a year ahead of schedule”.

Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan said the Metro Tunnel would transform the city’s rail network by creating a new end-to-end rail line from Sunbury to Cranbourne and Pakenham, with bigger and better trains and five new stations.