Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Delay of the Day

Train line blocked in rail union stand-off

A stand-off between warring factions of the state's rail union last night saw a Belgrave line train stopped, blocking the path of other trains, for five hours on platform two at Flinders Street Station.

- Belgrave line blocked
- Dispute 'pretty similar'
- About 50 trains cancelled

Train drivers and train controllers - the two belong to separate factions of the Rail, Tram and Bus Union - were last night locked in an argument over the train, which was to run on the Belgrave/Lilydale line.
The train sat at Flinders Street Station's platform two from 6pm until about midnight, as train drivers and train controllers fought over what happen to the train, which had a failed intercom.
One train driver, who asked not to be named, told The Age last night it was train controllers causing the stand-off. "They are setting out to cause trouble," the driver said.
Train operator Connex is having serious trouble negotiating with its train drivers over how faults on trains are recorded, and drivers are now almost at open war with train controllers. Controllers have sided with Connex to retain the current system.
In dispute is how faults on trains are reported; train drivers want to change the system of fault reporting to give them more power, while train controllers want to keep the status quo.

Honestly, these guys are holding thousands of commuters to ransom over red tape. Surely they can sort this out? The politicla in-fighting within the union will not help anyone associated with the train system.

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