Member for Newcastle, Tim Crakanthorp has called on the Government to confirm that the new Intercity trains that will service the Sydney to Newcastle line will continue to employ train guards on each trip.
Mr Crakanthorp was recently alerted to the plan to cut the guards, by Novocastrians who are currently working on the line. The residents were concerned that the next Intercity train they introduce for use will be crewed by a driver only. One constituent raised several cases of incidents with passengers and emergency situations that he had been involved in which required a guard.
He also pointed out that all trains, outside of metropolitan trains in Melbourne, Perth and Adelaide, freight and passenger, are always crewed by at least two workers.
Mr Crakanthorp raised it as a question in Parliament and the Minister has replied with a vague response, “where safe to do so, NSW Trainlink proposes operating New Intercity Fleet trains as driver only.”
It does not specify which services are deemed safe.
Mr Crakanthorp is demanding the Minister rule out removing guards on the Central Coast and Newcastle line.
Quotes attributable to Member for Newcastle, Tim Crakanthorp
“The Minister must rule out removing guards from train services operating on Central Coast and Newcastle line.”
“Safety is paramount. The train line passes through remote areas and the safety of passengers and crew needs to be assured.”
“If there is an emergency on board, we should be assured that there are adequate levels of staff to take care of the situation and drive the train.”