A train derailment in Melbourne’s outer east could have been avoided had proper maintenance been carried out, the public transport union has claimed.
In the early hours of Monday morning a maintenance train partially derailed at Lilydale, shutting down much of the line during the peak period.
The incident follows last Thursday’s network meltdown during the evening rush and during negotiations between the Andrews Government and Metro Trains over whether the operator is granted another lucrative contract to run the network.
The Rail, Tram and Bus Union (RTBU) has written to all Victorian Labor Government MPs saying that the latest failure of Metro is another reason the company should not be awarded another contract.
It said the section of the track had been deemed out of service since 2015 and should have been fixed sooner.
“Thankfully this morning’s derailment caused no deaths, however it did cause major inconvenience to commuters and major damage to the rolling stock,” RTBU secretary Luba Grigorovitch said.
“Once again, this incident could have been avoided with good practice.
“The documentation shows that the incident on the Lilydale line early this morning was preventable and occurred at a location that had been booked out of service by MTM [Metro Trains Melbourne] due to the track being deemed as critically unsafe.”
Crowds at Southern Cross Station after a computer glitch caused delays during peak hour. (Twitter: Laura Louise)
Metro said the claims from the union were incorrect and that it had “categorically ruled out” a set of points listed on the out-of-service log as being responsible.
“We are committed to the safe running of trains and providing a reliable service,” a Metro spokeswoman said.
The union has been lobbying government to return the operation of the network to public hands.