AUSTRALIA - Speed, Alcohol, Signals All Ruled Out Over Last Night's Train Derailment : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

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Title: Speed, Alcohol, Signals Ruled Out Over Derailment

Source: AAP | Published: Friday April 7, 9:16 AM

Speed, signalling and alcohol have been ruled out as causes for last night's derailment of a CityRail train in Sydney which caused commuter delays this morning.

Today the New South Wales Minister for Transport Carl Scully was calling for immediate answers as to why it occurred at all.

The last five cars of an eight-carriage train derailed at 10.05pm near inner-city Redfern station last night as it was heading for the overnight holding yard.

Only the driver and a guard were on board at the time and neither were injured.

Commuters have been warned to expect 10 minute delays on all CityRail lines this morning while trains slow down to pass the accident site and others are diverted.

As soon as the Transport Minister heard of the derailment he telephoned the Transport Safety Bureau looking for answers.

"He asked the TSB to investigate immediately, he also spoke to the chief executive officer of StateRail, Simon Lane, and the chief executive of Rail Access Corporation who runs the tracks, John Cowling.

"He spoke to these people, he wants answers quickly and wants cooperation regarding the investigation," a spokeswoman for Mr Scully said.

She said it appeared unlikely speed was a factor leaving open questions about the set of points or the line. "Both the driver and the guard returned negative breath test specimens too," the spokeswoman said.

But according to the Shadow Minister for Transport Barry O'Farrell more needs to be done.

"They've ruled out speed, alcohol and signalling so that leaves everything else in the system," Mr O'Farrell said.

"It raises real concerns about safety, ever time something like this happens the government says there will be an inquiry.

"But it keeps reoccurring, but the problem is the government is taking a reactive position rather than a proactive one."

Earlier this week, a Liberal Party push to force the NSW government into conducting a major inquiry into the state's train system was quashed in the upper house when it failed to win the support of backbenchers.

Mr O'Farrell said he was very critical that the upper house knocked down the opposition's proposal for the public inquiry into CityRail.

"It would have shed some light on why things are occurring and what we have to do in the future." The state government announced on Wednesday it would give a $7 million facelift to railway stations across Sydney as part of an Olympics rail improvement program.


-- (, April 06, 2000


NSW trains delayed by by derailment

Source: AAP | Published: Friday April 7, 7:07 AM

Commuters can expect delays this morning of up to 15 minutes across the entire StateRail network due to a derailment at an inner-city station overnight.

At 10.05pm (AEST) last night the last five cars of an eight-carriage train derailed outside Redfern station.

This morning peak-hour commuters on intercity and country lines could expect delays across the whole network of 15 minutes, a StateRail spokesman said.

The empty older-style double decker train was making its last journey for the night heading to the Eveleigh rail siding, south of Redfern station, when the derailment occurred.

Only the driver and a guard were on board the train at the time.

Both were treated by ambulance paramedics at the scene for shock and will provide statements to StateRail investigators this morning.

"The train's still there but we're able to run all suburban services past it due to the way the lines are configured," StateRail spokesman Wayne Geddes said told AAP.

"The first three carriages are still on the track ... it derailed on the fourth carriage which is very unusual.

"Normally if a train goes off it does so from the first carriage."

Investigators are looking into the as yet unknown cause of the accident.

"Intercity trains which normally use platform one will be diverted to platform three, which is normally only for suburban trains.

"Intercity trains from Newcastle and Gosford normally use platform three and the south coast intercity trains which normally use platform one will be diverted via the eastern suburbs line," he said.

Essentially the south coast lines stands alone and will have 'very close to a normal trip' with passengers having to change at Central Station.

"The Blue Mountains and country trains will still leave and arrive as scheduled."

Emergency crews were this morning working to clear the track using hydraulic jacks and heavy lifting cranes.

The incident is another black mark against the city's rail system with a string of derailments over the past six months including at Waverton, Hornsby and Olympic Park at Homebush.

-- (, April 06, 2000.

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