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Summer heat

Melbourne / Victoria Transport Discussion

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Summer heat

Postby Roderick Smith » Fri Dec 01, 2017 10:42 am

Roderick

November 30 2017 Is Melbourne ready for summer?
It's Melbourne's third consecutive day over 43 degrees. The power is out. Trains are at a standstill after the rails buckle and warp in the heat...This isn't some dystopia. It already happened, in 2009.
..."Obviously in urban areas, you're not threatened by bushfires if you live in Brunswick. But in cities and urban centres, heat is retained overnight, so our asphalt and our concrete environments hold heat."
...Emergency Management Victoria has to plan for what happens when everything goes wrong.
"We work on energy disruption plans, we've got plans around public transport disruption ... We plan from the [scenario] that these events are likely to happen ...
On the rails:
Trains have to slow down in the heat. Photo: Joe Armao.
Upgrades to Comeng trains, the wider use of concrete rather than timber sleepers, continuous welded rail, and temperature sensors on tracks have helped Melbourne's trains run more smoothly during hot periods in recent years.
Metro Trains claims the system is now well equipped to handle Melbourne's hot weather, but if temperatures reach 42 degrees, trains across the network will be forced to slow to 70km/h.
Unexpected temperature changes may also result in speed reductions to prevent the steel tracks from expanding.
Commuters had a taste of this on the hottest day so far in November, when trains on the busy Frankston line slowed to 80km/h on the 34-degree day. (Trains usually run at a 110 km/h speed limit, reaching a maximum of 150km/h in some sections.) But trains are not the only form of public transport vulnerable to the hot weather. Trams on a quarter of Melbourne's routes still have no air conditioning. This includes Route 57 and 82 (Z-Class trams), Routes 12, 30 and 78 (A-Class trams) and Route 35 (W-Class).
graphic
Public Transport Users Association spokesman Tony Morton said air conditioning on trams was important, but so too were windows that can be opened, of which there were few on newer E-Class trams. (Windows on C and D-class trams can't be opened, so they are removed from service on hot days).
"If the air conditioning dies, these trams are more uncomfortable than trams which do not have air conditioning but have all the windows open."
When trams and trains fail, commuters rely on the neglected bus network to pick up the slack. Bus companies are contracted by Metro Trains and Yarra Trams to fill gaps during planned and unplanned cancellations.
But what happens when the buses shut down in the warm weather too? On November 14, the Frankston train speeds were reduced, 38 Transdev buses were cancelled in the afternoon peak due to heat, leaving passengers stranded in the CBD.
Engines broke down on several A66 and A76 MAN buses, models which make up 62 of Transdev's 510 buses in Melbourne.
"If these summer heatwaves are going to be more common in the future, we can't have essential infrastructure breaking down every other week," Dr Morton said.
Powering up:
A new report has found the benefits of electricity privatisation may be overstated...
"Think about how children will get home from school if the trains or trams aren't running, or if the power is out and you can't recharge your phone.
http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/is-me ... zpzhe.html
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Re: Summer heat

Postby Heihachi_73 » Tue Dec 12, 2017 4:57 pm

Going to be a hot one tomorrow, just short of 100 on the old scale.

"Trains usually run at a 110 km/h speed limit, reaching a maximum of 150km/h in some sections."
Where is this, it certainly isn't the same Melbourne I am used to, where suburban trains are closer to light rail speeds. Hitting 110 km/h on the few straight sections of the Lilydale/Belgrave lines would be a dream come true. Even with most of the level crossings removed between the city and Ringwood the train speeds and timetables have stayed exactly the same.

"Trams on a quarter of Melbourne's routes still have no air conditioning. This includes Route 57 and 82 (Z-Class trams), Routes 12, 30 and 78 (A-Class trams) and Route 35 (W-Class)."
Z3 and A class trams do have air conditioning these days. I was able to turn A1 244 into a fridge at one end by shutting all the windows while it was at the route 12 St. Kilda terminus two weeks ago, despite the temperature being nearly 30 outside. All it takes is for the sheeple to stop opening the windows and let the air conditioning do its job, although the habit will be extremely hard for them to drop given that these trams had no air conditioning for over thirty years.
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Re: Summer heat

Postby boronia » Tue Dec 12, 2017 7:30 pm

Trams have had no airconditioning for over 100 years. Why is it a problem all of a sudden?
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Re: Summer heat

Postby BroadGauge » Tue Dec 12, 2017 7:47 pm

Heihachi_73 wrote:Z3 and A class trams do have air conditioning these days. I was able to turn A1 244 into a fridge at one end by shutting all the windows while it was at the route 12 St. Kilda terminus two weeks ago, despite the temperature being nearly 30 outside. All it takes is for the sheeple to stop opening the windows and let the air conditioning do its job, although the habit will be extremely hard for them to drop given that these trams had no air conditioning for over thirty years.

What air conditioning are you talking about? Those trams have air conditioning units in the drivers cabs, but nothing for the passenger saloon.
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Re: Summer heat

Postby krustyklo » Tue Dec 12, 2017 9:22 pm

Trams have had no airconditioning for over 100 years. Why is it a problem all of a sudden?

Higher expectations that trams have better conditions akin to their main competitor, the motor car? Especially given most modern (for some definition given B class trams from the late 80s have air conditioning) trams do have air conditioning raising expectations that it is a standard feature of tram travel, making it's absence noticable.

To be honest though, I'd prefer a PT vehicle with air conditioning than not. It's not like we still have a large fleet of wooden trams whose body naturally insulates against the heat, as well smaller windows to allow less radiated heat from outside the vehicle. Or rail vehicles well insulated with asbestos insulation. I could be wearing my rose coloured glasses here, but I'm sure Harris trains kept cooler than Hitachi trains...

To be fair, I suspect another factor is the longer life of rail vehicles compared to motor cars. There are likely proportionally a lot fewer late 70s and 80s cars where air conditioning was still a semi-luxury than late 70s and 80s trams from the same era with the same expectations when they were designed and manufactured compared to nowadays where standard features of 90s and more recent vehicles are air conditioning, effective heating, and comfortable seats. I'd still trade a modern tram for a W class hooning along Sturt St in the 80s with all the windows open and the sea breezes blowing off the bay...
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Re: Summer heat

Postby Heihachi_73 » Thu Dec 14, 2017 4:21 pm

BroadGauge wrote:
Heihachi_73 wrote:Z3 and A class trams do have air conditioning these days. I was able to turn A1 244 into a fridge at one end by shutting all the windows while it was at the route 12 St. Kilda terminus two weeks ago, despite the temperature being nearly 30 outside. All it takes is for the sheeple to stop opening the windows and let the air conditioning do its job, although the habit will be extremely hard for them to drop given that these trams had no air conditioning for over thirty years.

What air conditioning are you talking about? Those trams have air conditioning units in the drivers cabs, but nothing for the passenger saloon.

Well, whatever air was coming out of the vent behind the driver's cab was like standing in front of a fridge with the door open, I don't expect a regular fan to be able to do that alone. This week I rode a Z3 (197) for the first time in ages only to find that they don't have the same fans/vents as the A classes. Upon catching A1 252 on route 12 it had the vent facing the next stop display rather than pointing the air towards the floor so what little airflow that was happening was all but useless.

Last night I caught Citadis 3008, the desto is almost unreadable with stray pixels all over the place. The sooner these flip-dot displays and the useless blank PIDs find the nearest skip the better.
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