A NEW performance monitoring system has revealed the full extent of the issues plaguing Bendigo line train services.
Public Transport Victoria this week unveiled a new monitoring system that allows data to be accessed dating back to 2001.
It came as V/Line shared performance data for January, with just 75.4 per cent of services running within the on-time threshold of five minutes and 59 seconds.
The new software allows users to track back to figures from the start of the millennium, but they don’t paint a pretty picture for V/Line and PTV.
Despite advances in technology, new V/Locity trains and the regional rail link, last year’s on-time figure of 85.1 per cent was the equal second worst since the turn of the century.
Only 2009’s on-time figure of 84.6 per cent was worse, with 85.1 per cent of services also recorded as being on time in 2008.
Last year’s reliability figure of 96.7 per cent in Bendigo line services was the worst recorded since 2001, but that figure remains above V/Line’s benchmark of 96 per cent reliability.
The benchmark figure for punctuality is 92 per cent.
Reliability last month was 94.3 per cent, below the benchmark figure and the worst since last February.
Across the network, 2017 was the worst recorded by V/Line since the data began being recorded.
Reliability across the network was above benchmarks at 97.7 per cent, but the on-time percentage of 84.1 was clearly the worst recorded in the 17 years of data available.
It comes after the level crossing issues and train maintenance saga that has engulfed the network in recent years.
Last year the state government announced a huge package of works for the regional network, to be funded by money public transport minister Jacinta Allan said was owed to Victoria via the sale of the Port of Melbourne.
That money is yet to be delivered, so the more than $1 billion in promised work, including $91 million on the Bendigo line, is yet to begin.
A new contract between PTV and the state’s metropolitan train operator, Hong Kong-based consortium MTM, has been spruiked by the operator for its potential to deliver punctuality benefits for regional services.
The contract also called for better performance monitoring, which PTV says the new system delivers.
PTV CEO Jeroen Weimar said the new online tool gives the public more detail on operator performances.
He said it is “reflecting its drive towards greater transparency under the new train and tram contracts”.
V/Line CEO James Pinder said the January figures owed to several days of heat speed restrictions, as Bendigo sweltered through a record hot summer.
He said safety will continue to be V/Line’s number one priority for the remainder of summer.
– Joel Peterson