Rail safety issues and actions

Management of lineside foliage

Issue number: RO-2014-024-SI-01
Who it affects: All road users and operators of trains on trackage owner or managed by V/Line.
Issue owner: V/Line
Transport function: Rail: Operations control
Background: Investigation Report RO-2014-024
Issue release date: 25 September 2015
Current issue status: Adequately addressed
Issue status justification:

The ATSB is satisfied that the actions proposed by V/Line Pty Ltd will, when fully implemented, adequately address this safety issue.

Safety issue description

V/Line’s process for the inspection of level crossing sighting did not provide explicit instructions for the identification and removal of problem vegetation.

Proactive Action

Action number: RO-2014-024-NSA-020
Action organisation: V/Line
Date: 25 September 2015
Action status: Closed

V/Line Pty Ltd has advised that it has reviewed its Asset Management Framework to include elements of vegetation control that are more explicit than currently exist, and is proceeding as follows:

  • Is engaging the services of a vegetation management contractor to undertake hazardous tree assessment-including of predicted growth-that could impact rail, staff, or customer and neighbour safety.
  • Has revised the inspection frequency for Level Crossing Line-of-Sight inspections from an annual requirement to a 3-monthly inspection via a foot patrol.
  • Is revising the vegetation/hazardous trees inspection from annually to monthly via a foot patrol.
  • Is instigating a Plan-Do-Review (PDR) cycle that is expected to improve the management of faults identified from inspections. The outcomes are expected to be implemented by 1st July 2015. This includes the inspections outlined above for Level Crossing Line-of-Sight and Hazardous Trees/Vegetation Management.
  • Is introducing weekly PDR meetings after every set of inspections, and developing a rolling 4-weekly corridor-by-corridor plan.
Last update 25 September 2015