July 7th, 2009 at 11:51am
Because if, for some strange reason, they actually succeed in building it, you can be assured that it will be plagued with problems. This time around, it’s lighting which makes train drivers sick.
Chatswood Epping Rail link a blinking farce
By Rhys Haynes
The Daily Telegraph
THE problems facing the $2.3 billion Epping to Chatswood Rail Link – a train line $1 billion over budget that goes halfway to it original destination – continue to mount.
Yesterday I travelled along the line, staring out the window like any of the 10,000 passengers would do each day.
I tried to count the individual lights as we went along, and at one point I swayed sideways because I felt so giddy.
I was able to look away and take a few seconds to readjust my eyes because I was dizzy.
I can’t even imagine what it is like for a driver trying to concentrate on his or her job.
It would be like trying to drive a car while having your front seat passenger flicking a torch on and off in your face – for 8½ hours.
RailCorp played down the claims of ill drivers when approached by The Daily Telegraph yesterday.
But in the same breath one of the organisation’s most senior executives, Andy Byford, said he had immediately implemented a number of considerable shift restrictions and driver rules because he was taking “no risks”.
The link won’t be officially in place until October when the line is integrated into the rest of the network’s timetable.
That means the Rees Government has less than 100 days to sort out the problems before it gets truly embarrassing.
Right now these issues are buried deep underground in a small pocket of Sydney’s northwest.
Steep tracks, loud trains, problematic concrete sleepers and cracks in the ceiling are just the start of it.
The latest problem on the Epping to Chatswood line involving a strobe-lighting effect seems staggeringly obvious to anyone who has travelled in the tunnel.
Why did it take a driver in hospital to force RailCorp to investigate the problem?
That would be a good question Rhys, if it weren’t the New South Wales government in charge. Have you ever known the Carr/Iemma/Rees et al government to build a tunnel or other bit of transport infrastructure, be it for cars, trains, aeroplanes or ferries, and get it right?
Didn’t think so.