Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Richlands - more Queensland mediocrity!

Richlands Station
BrizCommuter decided to take a look at Richlands station on it's second day of operation. The station was opened a week early on Monday 17/01/11 to help western suburbs after the flood, and during the Ipswich Line closure due to flood damage. The line was running an interim timetable prior to the Ipswich Line re-opening, different to the previous days interim timetable, and different to the interim timetable once the Ipswich Line re-opens. Confused?

Ipswich Line trains can be diverted to Richlands quite easily, as they did on 17/01/11. The trains would pass between Darra and Richlands, allowing for a long terminus dwell time at Richlands for reliability. However, QR decided to make things more difficult for themselves on 18/01/11 by terminating Ipswich Line trains at Darra, and running a shuttle to and from Richlands. Why make things more complicated? Maybe the shuttle was in preparation for the re-opening of Ipswich Line through services? If so, the through services could just have been diverted back from Richlands to Ipswich, and a spare train used to start the shuttle when required.

The result of the above interim timetable, meant that BrizCommuter's Darra bound train was held at Oxley, as the City bound train from Darra was blocking it's route thanks to the half-baked infrastructure and a signalling stuff up. The train then arrived at Darra late, pulling in just as the "connecting" Richlands bound train pulled out. Why wasn't this train held? There was also no information to tell passengers when, and from which platform the next Richlands train would depart. It took an unacceptable 67 minutes for BrizCommuter to travel from Roma Street to Richlands. Not amused!

On the return journey, BrizCommuter was pleased that the train departed Richlands on time, allowing a few minutes to make that connection at Darra. Unfortunately upon arrival at Darra, the passengers (plus passengers from the replacement bus) were incorrectly directed by platform staff and the passenger information displays to the wrong platform. BrizCommuter realised this mistake, as a train was at another platform, and had a green signal. If it wasn't for intervention by BrizCommuter, many passengers would have missed this train.

Given that Hiroshima managed to get it's trams running 3 days after a nuclear bomb, it's rather concerning that QR can stuff up an interim operation on brand new infrastructure. The journey to Richlands showed that the half-baked SEQIPRAIL infrastructure project - not electrifying the 4th track between Corinda and Darra as well as suboptimal crossover placements, was a very big mistake, and was causing delays even on the second day of operation of the Richlands Line.

Richlands' car park was quite busy, showing that even with a limited service it has been a success. However, anyone thinking of making that move from car to public transport would be seriously deterred if their journey was anything like BrizCommuter's journey.

1 comment:

  1. We might as well have lost WWII, and let the Japanese take over.


All comments are reviewed before being published, and it may take a few days for comments to appear. If comments do not add to the conversation, or are just plain stupid, they will not be published.