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Public safety should be priority for new Metro West railway

Nov 15, 2016Media releases
The New South Wales branch of the Rail Tram and Bus Union have welcomed the state government’s new underground metro railway for Western Sydney, but are concerned that the driver-less system could compromise public safety.

RTBU NSW Secretary Alex Claassens said that whilst any new major public transport project was a positive development, the union would make sure the public and their safety remained a priority for the $10 billion investment.

“Whilst we welcome investment in new public transport we remain concerned about the safety issues posed by the driver-less trains that will be part of the new Metro network,” said Mr Claassens.

“Public transport investment is long overdue, but we’re concerned that the government’s plan for the Metro West railway haven’t fully taken the public’s safety into account.”

“The government needs to be clear with the public about how many of these trains will run without a single staff member on board to deal with accidents or incidents, in hard to access places like below Sydney Harbour.”

“If the government is prepared to make a huge $10billion investment in public transport, then it should be sure that it does it right and that the public are at the centre of the new development.”

“The union is concerned that the new Metro line will not only lack train drivers, but frontline service staff like guards, that are vital for the safe and on-time running of the railways.

“Front-line service staff, like train guards, are the eyes and ears of the railway – they are there to assist the disabled, seniors, and women with prams, making sure that the train to platform interface is accessible and runs smoothly.”

“Drivers and train guards not only make sure the trains run on time but play a vital role in ensuring safety, they respond as incidents happen and are there to make reports to police should the need arise.”

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