QR meets to discuss train travel plans for next week


UPDATE 8:38AM | A Queensland Rail Board meeting was held on Sunday after 100 services were cancelled on Friday due to a lack of trained drivers.

QR met to restore its on-time running record of more than 96 per cent.

Queensland Rail Chief Executive Officer Helen Gluer said the Board met with Queensland Rail Executives to discuss an interim timetable and the steps forward to ensure that Queensland Rail delivers an efficient and effective rail service for its customers.


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“Today [Sunday], the Board endorsed the plan for an interim timetable to ensure certainty for our customers,” Ms Gluer said.

“The focus under this plan is to protect the peak periods and ensure that we continue to deliver a high level of service frequency and capacity morning and afternoons.

“The interim timetable will deliver certainty for our customers and restore trust in our service.

“Until just recently, Queensland Rail was the best performing railway in Australia with more than 96 per cent of trains running on time and I am determined to return the South East Queensland network to the number one spot.

“Our previous on-time running results were approximately 4 percentage points higher than those of Melbourne and I am disappointed that we have not achieved such positive results in the past three weeks. Getting back to this is my absolute priority.”

Ms Gluer said the interim timetable will be released as soon as possible (Monday 24 October) and commence on Tuesday.

“We are pulling out all the stops, but I want to prepare customers that we may face a couple of weeks with further changes to services as we transition to the new interim timetable,” she said.

“Our roster covers 928 traincrew and over the past fortnight, we’ve had drivers and guards come back from leave and take on extra shifts to try and get us through, but bringing shifts forward means we hit crunch point last Friday.

“We now need to ensure fatigue and safety breaks for crews and transition across to new rostering and timetable arrangements, as we work to get ourselves back on track.

“Thankfully no alterations are planned tomorrow [Monday].

“We will be working hard to manage our resources and minimise the impact in peak times, as well as making sure we give as much advance notice as possible. We ask that our customers to continue to check the TransLink website to plan their journey.

“In addition to providing advanced notice through the TransLink website, we will increase the number of customer service staff across the network to support customers with any changes.

In November 2015, the Government approved the recruitment of an additional 100 drivers and 100 guards to alleviate resourcing pressures and recruitment commenced in December 2015.

EARLIER 9:43AM | Gold Coasters who catch a train to work or school will have to check translink’s website before leaving the house on Monday, with more cancellations expected.

100 services were scrapped on Friday and more of the same is forecast for the coming week after Queensland Rail admitted it did not have enough drivers.

QR underestimated the number of guards and drivers needed to service the new Redcliffe rail line.

Queensland Rail Chief Executive Officer Helen Gluer said in recent weeks their resources had been severely stretched with driver training and additional services required by the implementation of a new timetable.

“Recent service alterations have resulted in uncertainty and we sincerely apologise to our customers and are disappointed that we have not been able to deliver on the high service we pride ourselves on,” Ms Gluer said.

“Our aim is to provide a first-class rail service and it is clear that we haven’t delivered that over the past couple of weeks.

“We have worked tirelessly to try to achieve workarounds to make the new timetable work and unfortunately, we have not been able to deliver this.

“So we are urgently progressing an interim timetable solution to alleviate the strain until our driver training on the new line is completed and we have new traincrew commence work as part of our recruitment program.

“On Monday, we will run the usual timetable for our customers and we’ll be releasing the interim timetable, which will commence on Tuesday.

“Our roster covers 928 traincrew and over the past fortnight, we’ve had drivers and guards come back from leave and take on extra shifts to try and get us through, but bringing shifts forward means we hit crunch point yesterday.

“We now need to ensure fatigue and safety breaks for crews and transition across to new rostering and timetable arrangements, as we work to get ourselves back on track.

“We are pulling out all the stops, but I want to prepare customers that we may face a couple of weeks with further changes to services as we transition to the new interim timetable.

“We will be working hard to manage our resources and minimise the impact in peak times, as well as making sure we give as much advance notice as possible. We ask that our customers to continue to check the TransLink website to plan their journey.

“For the past four years, we have been exceeding our targets and more than 96 per cent of trains have run on time. Getting back to that is my absolute priority.

“Every day, an enormous amount of work goes on behind the scenes to keep trains running safely and on time and we pride ourselves on delivering reliable services to our customers.

“We are disappointed that such positive results have not been delivered recently and we are working hard to improve our performance.

“In November 2015, the Government approved the recruitment of an additional 100 drivers and 100 guards to alleviate resourcing pressures and recruitment commenced in December 2015.”

However, it takes a year to train a driver and it will take time for us to see the benefit of these additional staff.

Queensland Rail is working closely with Translink on the interim timetable and will continue to give customers as much advance notice as possible on timetable changes.

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