Community facilities | February 01, 2016

Overland at risk as rail services in crisis

Nationals Member for Lowan, Emma Kealy has again raised concerns regarding the Overland passenger rail service following continued disruption, confusion and chaos to rail services across Victoria.

“The future of the Overland passenger rail service is still in question and I have significant concerns for the future of public transport in Western Victoria, as we see all rail services falling apart across the State,” Ms Kealy said.

Last year Public Transport Victoria (PTV) reviewed all services in regional Victoria to form a Network Development Plan for the next 20 years. PTV has since released a summary of feedback received from surveys and workshops held locally in Horsham and Hamilton.

“The PTV review highlighted the vital need for improved public transport services to our region, including passenger rail services," Ms Kealy said.

“What hope do we have of extending rail and road public transport services in Western Victoria, if the Andrew’s Labor Government can’t manage existing public transport services.

“The Overland is the only rail link for our region to connect with Melbourne and Adelaide and the Labor government needs to act quickly to avoid its demise,” she said.

Emma Kealy’s call to fund the Overland passenger rail comes on the back of weeks of chaos for country rail users across the State and the announcement of a week of free rail travel.

“Minister for Transport, Jacinta Allan’s quick fix for this crisis is to create a diversion by offering a week of free rail transport, which ironically comes directly from the pocket of the taxpayer," Ms Kealy said.

“The taxpayers of Lowan will again foot the bill for Labor’s costly mismanagement of the State’s resources," she said.

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