Mode Rail
Reference No. RR201400008
Date reported 01 July 2014
Concern title Concerns regarding poor track maintenance
Concern summary

The concern related to poor track maintenance leading to observed mudding of the ballast along a length of track and concerns for the stability of the track.

Industry / Operation affected Rail: Infrastructure
Concern subject type Rail: Track infrastructure

Reporter's concern

A concerned member of the public has expressed a safety concern in regards to the track maintenance procedures conducted by the rail operator.  The reporter has advised that they have observed mudding of the ballast along this track and is concerned about the stability of the track as the operator has put 'temporary' speed restrictions in place.

Operator's response (Operator 1)

We have investigated this safety concern expressed by a concerned member of the public regarding track maintenance procedures in this area. We have inspected this section of track as part of its regular inspection regime and can confirm a track irregularity in this location has been rectified.

Safety remains a core value and we are appreciative of the feedback made by this member of the public.

Regulator's response (Regulator 1)

The Office of the National Rail Safety Regulator (ONRSR) has reviewed the report and we are satisfied with the response supplied by the operator. Additionally, in regard to the matter at hand we note the following:

  • The ONRSR has imposed a current condition on the operator’s accreditation, whereby; they are required to undertake 96 hour inspections on the section of track in question (such action is more frequent to that of the usual inspection regime);
  • The operator appears to have undertaken action in implementing speed restrictions through the section of track in question;
  • The operator’s response indicates that a track irregularity within the section of track in question has been repaired.

Given the above information, the ONRSR intends on conducting a compliance inspection in order to validate the response received by the operator. We will provide a further response at the conclusion of the planned compliance inspection.

ONRSR further comments:

During the compliance inspection, it was noted that the operator has a current maintenance regime in effect, whereby; the operator is prioritising issues such as (but not limited to) the rectification of track defects.

The ONRSR is now satisfied that this issue is closed.


Last update 15 May 2015