Limited rail services to resume in New South Wales after bushfires

17 January 2020 (Last Updated January 17th, 2020 10:00)

Transport for New South Wales (TfNSW) in Australia has announced that limited passenger and freight services will resume next week.

Transport for New South Wales (TfNSW) in Australia has announced that limited passenger and freight services will resume next week.

This comes after severe bushfires have done substantial damage to the area.

Rail services would operate between Mount Victoria and Lithgow on the Blue Mountains Line. The Government of Australia is currently working to repair the damaged rail infrastructure in New South Wales.

The bushfires have damaged a 25km stretch of the main western rail line. This has caused massive damage to signalling and rail infrastructure.

Minister for Regional Transport and Roads Paul Toole said: “We recognise how important this rail connection is to passengers travelling to and from the west and to moving freight and we are doing everything possible to resume full services as soon as possible.

“Sydney Trains’ engineers have worked tirelessly to develop temporary systems that will allow us to restore rail connectivity and safely operate a limited number of freight trains from Monday evening and passenger trains from Tuesday 21 January.”

Crews working on the rail lines have currently removed around 300 damaged trees. They are relaying communication, electrical, and signal wiring along the corridor.

TfNSW suspended services between Mount Victoria and Lithgow on 19 December due to the massive fires.

NSW TrainLink chief executive Pete Allaway said: “The first Bathurst Bullet, the Broken Hill XPLORER and most Dubbo XPT services will resume to a slightly altered timetable, with the remaining affected services to continue to be replaced by coaches and buses while repair work continues.”

Many bushfires are still burning and efforts to contain them continue.