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Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

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Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby Mercedes » Tue Jan 02, 2018 9:11 pm

Welcome to 2018!
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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby Heihachi_73 » Wed Jan 03, 2018 5:51 am

An early mishap to start the year, Citadis 3015 split the points outside Kew Depot early this morning (or late last night on its last run). The tram was still there at 4AM and an A class had to do the first run from Kew to Box Hill.

Coincidentally, I was on 3015 earlier that night heading to the city.
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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby Heihachi_73 » Fri Jan 05, 2018 3:22 pm

Spotted Z3 131 at around 10:20PM last night on test heading outbound on the 75 near Hawthorn station.
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short shunting

Postby Roderick Smith » Sat Jan 06, 2018 8:03 pm

January 4 2018 Thousands of tram trips cut short to avoid delay penalties, leaked data reveals .
Thousands of Melbourne tram trips are being abruptly cut short and commuters left stranded, as Yarra Trams tries to dodge tough penalties for delays, leaked internal data reveals.
Monthly performance tram data obtained by The Age reveals there were about 10,670 short shunts in November last year, an average of about 356 times a day.
Short-shunting is leaving thousands of passengers stranded. Photo: Pat Scala
This was up from about 7670 short shunts the year before, marking a 33 per cent decline in performance over the year.
A short shunt occurs when a tram is stopped before it has reached the end of the line and turned back. This enables the tram to collect passengers travelling in the opposite direction and return on time.
'Ridiculous' running times: Phil Altieri of the Rail Tram & Bus Union. Photo: Paul Jeffers
Under the terms of Yarra Trams' contract with the state, the operator is penalised for failing to meet performance targets, with lateness and cancellations triggering fines.
The leaked results relate to the tram network's performance in the final month before the new seven-year contract with the state government kicked in on November 30, which imposes tougher penalties for short shunts.
Collisions, emergency services requests, infrastructure faults and traffic jams often trigger short shunts.
Last year's results suggest that the contract's new performance targets may be difficult to meet.
But a spokeswoman for acting public transport minister Philip Dalidakis said the new contract was "putting passengers first".
"We have also introduced a passenger experience regime with associated penalties for under performance and increased fines – for things such as short-shunting," the spokesman said.
A Yarra Trams spokesman said high temperatures and a string of protests in November triggered 1500 short shunts and 52 service cancellations.
"Operational decisions are made in real time and we always aim to deliver the best possible service to passengers," he said.
“Tram drivers keep saying to us that this is ridiculous, we cannot stick to this time unless we break road laws.”
Phil Altieri, Rail Tram & Bus Union
The internal document also reveals that Yarra Trams' punctuality was 79.6 per cent, which met the old contract's targets of 77 per cent, but not the new requirement for trams to run on time 82 per cent of the time.
It is understood that the number of passengers on a tram and the delays they endured are factored into the complex formula used to determine penalties.
Yarra Trams estimated that it would have to pay over $2 million in penalties in November, according to the leaked data, up from about $700,000 the year before.
This is after 1378 services were cancelled – nearly double the 716 cancellations the previous year.
Rail Tram & Bus Union tram division secretary Phil Altieri said the problem came down to Yarra Trams "excessively" reducing tram running time, which created impossible targets for drivers.
He said short shunts incur a penalty, though the penalty may be smaller than a delayed train running to the end of the route.
"Since 2011 and 2012, there has been a dramatic push to reduce running times. Tram drivers keep saying to us that this is ridiculous, we cannot stick to this time unless we break road laws and Yarra Tram rules," Mr Altieri said.
"Essential services like public transport should never be privatised, because it inevitably comes down to the bottom line ... services suffer, the people suffer and safety is compromised."
Public Transport Users Association spokesman Daniel Bowen said short-shunting was symptomatic of a lack of traffic lane and priority given to trams at traffic lights.
Three quarters of the tram network operates on shared roads with other vehicles and 17 per cent of journey time is spent at red lights, which is below the international standard of 3 per cent.
"Running times do need to be regularly reviewed and revised, they have to be realistic," said Mr Bowen.
"But equally, the government should be doing more to cut delays for trams."
Yarra Trams' performance for December – the first month after the new contract started – has not yet been released.
www.theage.com.au/victoria/thousands-of ... 0dgwm.html
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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby Heihachi_73 » Fri Feb 02, 2018 5:11 am

B2 2078 must have been a bit lost last night, I rode this one on route 75 from Vermont South to Glenferrie Rd, it still had the route 59 etc. stickers and timetables inside. Also rode Z3 155 shortly after on route 16, this tram still wearing the ancient TransdevTSL white over grey.
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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby maxy54 » Fri Feb 02, 2018 2:39 pm

Heihachi_73 wrote:B2 2078 must have been a bit lost last night, I rode this one on route 75 from Vermont South to Glenferrie Rd, it still had the route 59 etc. stickers and timetables inside. Also rode Z3 155 shortly after on route 16, this tram still wearing the ancient TransdevTSL white over grey.


2078 is certainly not lost, it’s only on loan to Camberwell depot from Essendon depot
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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby PaxInfo » Wed Feb 14, 2018 9:09 pm

Something new from PTV to play around with https://app.powerbi.com/view?r=eyJrIjoi ... g1NmUyNCJ9

Historical train and tram performance statistics
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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby Heihachi_73 » Tue Feb 20, 2018 4:23 pm

The cafe/station building at Middle Park went up in smoke last night, with route 96 light rail services being diverted onto route 12 aka "96a via Clarendon St".
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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby Leyland B21 » Tue Feb 20, 2018 9:09 pm

Heihachi_73 wrote:The cafe/station building at Middle Park went up in smoke last night, with route 96 light rail services being diverted onto route 12 aka "96a via Clarendon St".
Obviously not the full trip as park streets rails turn into Fitzroy Street east bound. Shame to lose the cafe as i felt it an important piece of yesteryear

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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby Heihachi_73 » Wed Feb 21, 2018 6:34 am

Yeah, I rode E 6017 on the "12" (96a) section as far as Crown Casino that night, it barely even fit in the platform stop at the Park St terminus; the A class (299) originally there had to move half a length out, while one end of the E class was half way around the corner at Fitzroy St. 299 eventually ran out of service which is why I ended up in 6017. Route 12 trams were running as normal. I assume either another 96 tram was already at the Acland St end running a shuttle, or people were forced onto the route 16 trams to at least Luna Park, which I'm sure would have been a lot of fun cramming 50+ people on a Z3 all the way to the city. At least one C2 also made it along the route 12 section that night, I passed it while in 6017.

Last night I rode another borrowed B2 on the 75, this time it was 2122 complete with the 1/6/11/19/86 "A" timetables still on board. I was also lucky enough to ride in Z3 116 on Glenferrie Rd, which is in remarkable condition for the oldest tram still in revenue service. As for another observation last night, A1 246 has a plain ceiling like a Z3/B2, I have never noticed another A class like that, usually they have a weird circular pattern on the ceiling.
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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby Craig » Thu Feb 22, 2018 8:55 am

Heihachi_73 wrote:As for another observation last night, A1 246 has a plain ceiling like a Z3/B2, I have never noticed another A class like that, usually they have a weird circular pattern on the ceiling.


A few of the earliest A class refurbishments had the ceiling replaced - I seem to recall a comment that the onboard temperature was hotter after they changed the panels, but possibly was just penny pinching?

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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby Volgrenthetrooper » Sat Mar 17, 2018 7:34 am

They're upgrading the N/E line so the loco services will be eliminated and the V/locity trains can run on the line.....
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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby B10BLE » Thu Mar 29, 2018 3:15 pm

Aren't the N Class locomotives and carriages 5 or 6 years past their use by date anyway.. Time they got replaced, but not with V/Locities.

Also, CFCLA unit VL360 has been converted to broad gauge for the Maryvale run, most likely to be permanently paired with sister unit VL356.
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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby Heihachi_73 » Thu Mar 29, 2018 8:05 pm

Replaced with what? It's not like PN/CFCLA or whoever else is just going to start handing over G classes and the like just to keep V/Line happy. I think the N classes will have quite a few more years left in them. As for the N sets (as in, true N cars, not the rebuilt Z cars), they too will probably still be running by 2030. As long as the carriages are kept in good condition and modernised every 10 or so years they should be fine. It's the same story with Yarra Trams and the Z/A/B classes; they don't have a hope in hell of being 100% low floor by 2030, a number of tram routes are still 100% high floor as it is, never mind the lack of accessible stops even if they did have the trams.
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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby Craig » Fri Mar 30, 2018 11:59 am

Case of watch this space actually - the Liberals have fired the first shot with their per-election promise of replacing the N-sets with a new fleet of long distance Vlocities...

Surf Coast Times wrote:Liberals pledge to upgrade diesel trains
written by James Taylor Mar 07, 2018

THE Victorian Opposition has made a big transport move ahead of this year’s state election, pledging to spend $633 million to upgrade regional rail services.

On Sunday, Opposition Leader Matthew Guy said that if the Coalition came to power at November’s poll, it would replace the diesel engines with long-haul variants of the Vlocity trains.

This will enable the existing 1980s-era diesel-hauled trains to be gradually phased out of service, with the new long haul fleet to service the Warrnambool, Shepparton, Albury, Bairnsdale and Swan Hill lines.

The order for the trains would be placed in June 2019, with the new fleet delivered during the Coalition’s first term.

The fleet replacement of 16 new train sets, consisting of 96 new railcars and capable of speeds up to 160kmh, will be built in Victoria as a new variant to suit longer-haul country travel.

“I will bring Victoria’s regional rail into the twenty-first century,” Mr Guy said.

“The Liberal Nationals have a strategy to decentralise Victoria’s population to ease the squeeze on Melbourne’s growth. A modern regional rail service is a central part of our plan.

“My government would focus on bringing new jobs to country Victoria, better regional roads and rail as well as improving health and education services.

“Daniel Andrews is the Premier for Melbourne – I will be a Premier for all of Victoria.”

<snip>


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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby krustyklo » Fri Mar 30, 2018 8:06 pm

Case of watch this space actually - the Liberals have fired the first shot with their per-election promise of replacing the N-sets with a new fleet of long distance Vlocities...

Haven't they just announced the next stage of the PTV plan - the Labor party presumably will match the promise to neutralise it - and both parties have nothing to lose in promising it anyway other than a promise to fund the PTV regional network plan to replace the locos and N-sets?
As for commentary on the age of the N class locos and N-sets, the N sets date from late 1981 (with a current refurbishment) and the N class locos from 1985. At 36/32 years old respectively, they are hardly life expired by rail standards. Even compared to modern automotive standards, the N sets still compare favourably in having effective air conditioning and a buffet that even serves decent coffee at a surprisingly reasonable price. I wonder in some ways if it is a case of be careful what you wish for as I'd much rather ride an N-set in comfort nowadays than a slightly faster V-locity set. Wasn't there an experiment around running N sets and N class locos at 130 km/h - what was the end result? I could see this as a reasonable trade off between comfort and speed. I'd accept that there is a need to start thinking about their replacement given the typical lead times between analysis / design / development.
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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby Craig » Sat Mar 31, 2018 11:41 am

In what ways do you see the comfort of the N-sets as superior?

The buffet feature will be retained in the long distance versions, as would first class seating, while economy passengers would enjoy 2 x 2 seating versus the 3 x 2 seating of the N-class seats (with basically all seats in group configuration). Another article from MSN makes better mention of this.

MSN wrote:....The Coalition is promising to spend $632.9 million on 96 new "next generation" VLocity railcars, which would operate as 16 six-carriage trains on Victoria's long distance lines, if it wins November's state election.

The new trains would be built at Bombardier's Dandenong factory, and would feature first and second class seating, as well as buffet facilities.

Mr Guy said the announcement would be the first of many; promising regional rail passengers a "new deal".

"First class, economy class, buffet class, as it is now, but on new VLocity trains, faster, more efficent, more reliable more comfortable", he said.


The AC on fine on N-sets when it works, but if it doesn't, it can lead to services being replaced by the rougher H-set carriages (a semi-regular occurrence on the shorter Shepparton services) or otherwise coaches, which can take time to source. Sometimes they are able to find a spare Vlocity set to still run the service as far as Bendigo or Sale, and only put people on a coach for part of the trip. But bad luck if you were counting on the buffet service.

In the height of the short-lived Vlocity crisis at the start of 2016, I had the misfortune of boarding an unreserved Z-class carriage at Wyndham Vale on a 35 to 40 degree afternoon, and only the air circulation was working, no cooling. Felt sorry for anyone who had boarded that service in Geelong thinking they'd been lucky to avoid a coach ride.

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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby krustyklo » Sat Mar 31, 2018 2:03 pm

In what ways do you see the comfort of the N-sets as superior?

Primarily the seating and other general ambience (eg, carpet), but they also seem to bounce less than Vlocities (to be fair more likely the speed differential and track quality) and seem quieter. I accept this could be purely perception than anything objective. I accept the buffet and first class will be included but would be interested to see whether it would be to the same interior standard as the current N sets. Sadly with every generation of train, the interior seems to head backwards - compare a Vlocity to the carriage hauled stock - even the H sets! It could also be I'm becoming a Grumpy Old Man... :D

The AC on fine on N-sets when it works, but if it doesn't, it can lead to services being replaced by the rougher H-set carriages (a semi-regular occurrence on the shorter Shepparton services) or otherwise coaches, which can take time to source. Sometimes they are able to find a spare Vlocity set to still run the service as far as Bendigo or Sale, and only put people on a coach for part of the trip. But bad luck if you were counting on the buffet service.

Not sure spending millions on new rollingstock is the best use of money if a key issue is unreliable air conditioning! Was anything done to upgrade the air conditioning with the most recent refurbishments?

In the height of the short-lived Vlocity crisis at the start of 2016, I had the misfortune of boarding an unreserved Z-class carriage at Wyndham Vale on a 35 to 40 degree afternoon, and only the air circulation was working, no cooling. Felt sorry for anyone who had boarded that service in Geelong thinking they'd been lucky to avoid a coach ride.

My last major Vline trip was N set to Swan Hill and coach to Mildura. The first 4 and a half hours were quite relaxing (admittedly I'd paid the extra $6 for first class) and I got off the train in the same condition I'd got on. After 3 hours on the bus between Swan Hill and Mildura, it's not something I'd rush to do again - I can see why people want the train returned. With that comparison, the people in the unreserved Z class carriage were still probably lucky to avoid a coach trip, even if it was a little warm!

To be honest I accept the N sets are not overly new and will need replacing soon enough. But I'd still hardly describe them as life expired. If the sums work out that new Vlocities are cheaper than refurbishment for the expected life span, sure - replace them. Either way, my main point was actually that the Liberal Party aren't promising much more than what is already planned and I suspect it will be quickly matched in time by the Labor Party. A genuine promise that would be harder to match and more likely to win votes from their constituency, promise to start building a line across from Swan Hill to the Mildura line and return the train.
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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby B10BLE » Sat Mar 31, 2018 7:15 pm

According to Railpage, Stratford station's platform is being extended to cater for the length of a 6 carriage V/Locity. So it appears the replacement of the N class and N & Z carriages will happen far sooner than 2030.

Heihachi_73 wrote:Replaced with what? It's not like PN/CFCLA or whoever else is just going to start handing over G classes and the like just to keep V/Line happy.


I was going to say a diesel version of the upcoming HCMT.

CFCLA won't hand over locomotives, but they do sell to any customer/operator if the price is right at auction. They've sold two flagship CFs to Aurizon and two to Freightliner/GWA. As for Pacific National, no matter the price being offered, they'd sell it to Sims Metal for scrap than selling to another operator. V/Line could offer Pacific National $6 million for 4 elderly X Class locomotives currently in storage but choose to sell those to Sims Metal for half that, maybe even a quarter of the price.
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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby BroadGauge » Sat Mar 31, 2018 8:47 pm

Apparently there is an N class + SSH set stabled at Bairnsdale presently. Due to the current shutdown, it will be stuck down there until the middle of the next month.

Does anybody know if it went down there as an empty movement on Thursday evening, or did it actually operate a passenger service going all that way!?
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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby pakenhamtrain » Sat Mar 31, 2018 10:41 pm

BroadGauge wrote:Apparently there is an N class + SSH set stabled at Bairnsdale presently. Due to the current shutdown, it will be stuck down there until the middle of the next month.

Does anybody know if it went down there as an empty movement on Thursday evening, or did it actually operate a passenger service going all that way!?

It was the normal 1834 down Bairnsdale.
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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby Mitch » Sun Apr 01, 2018 9:53 pm

B10BLE wrote:
Heihachi_73 wrote:Replaced with what? It's not like PN/CFCLA or whoever else is just going to start handing over G classes and the like just to keep V/Line happy.


[b]I was going to say a diesel version of the upcoming HCMT.


Which would essentially be a Vlocity 160 with a facelift anyway.

The N sets still have a lot of life and love to give. Look at the old Hitachi units which ran for over forty years. They still got around for years after modern rail stock came in.

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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby Heihachi_73 » Tue Apr 03, 2018 4:40 pm

Refurbished N sets on high speed bogies with regeared diesels, problem solved. Wait, that was already tried back in the 80s and was canned by the government (or was it V/Line in their infinite wisdom?) before anything could be done about it.
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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby B10BLE » Wed Apr 04, 2018 2:04 am

pakenhamtrain wrote:
BroadGauge wrote:Apparently there is an N class + SSH set stabled at Bairnsdale presently. Due to the current shutdown, it will be stuck down there until the middle of the next month.

Does anybody know if it went down there as an empty movement on Thursday evening, or did it actually operate a passenger service going all that way!?

It was the normal 1834 down Bairnsdale.


It appears this was done so an N set wouldn't be isolated in the far East of the state for more than two weeks, so they instead sacrificed an H set. Sounds reasonable, at first I was wondering why V/Line would put H sets on a long distance service, until I came across the video below

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Re: Victorian Rail & Tram Observations 2018

Postby BroadGauge » Wed Apr 25, 2018 8:20 pm

The current rail shutdown on the Hurstbridge line has been extended for another week. Train services will now resume on Monday May 7th, with after not having operated between Clifton Hill and Macleod for seven weeks since Friday March 16th.

https://levelcrossings.vic.gov.au/media ... s-extended
LXRA wrote:24/04/2018

A major construction blitz to remove two level crossings, build a new station and duplicate the line in Melbourne’s north east is being extended to the last service on Sunday 6 May 2018.

Despite around 1,000 workers working around the clock to make a huge amount of progress, rail signalling complexities have affected the works, which will take extra time to complete.

While the majority of works are completed, installing the rail signalling system that allows trains to travel safely on the network has taken longer than anticipated due to the condition and age of the infrastructure.

To ensure a safe return to train services on the Hurstbridge line, the disruption has been extended and trains will resume on Monday 7 May 2018.

The Level Crossing Removal Authority is sorry for this inconvenience to passengers who are no doubt looking forward to trains returning. However, we must make sure that trains operate as safely as they should from day one.

We will continue to work as hard as possible to get on with the task at hand and provide safe train services on the Hurstbridge line.

In order to get passengers to where they need to go, buses will continue to replace trains on the Hurstbridge line between Clifton Hill and Macleod until the last service on Sunday 6 May 2018. There will also be extra free buses operating between Eltham and the city during the AM and PM peak.

The Hurstbridge Rail Line Upgrade is on track for full completion by mid-2018.


I believe that this would be the longest suburban rail shutdown that has ever been undertaken in Melbourne, although compared to some interstate shutdowns (like the ones in Adelaide in the last few years), or the very long shutdowns of the mid-2000s of country trains for Regional Fast Rail work, it's not that long and has achieved a great deal of improvements ;)
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