Member for Rodney Paul Weller asked Victorian Transport Minister Terry Mulder in parliament this week to commit to increasing speed limits for trains between Echuca and Bendigo.By Trent Horneman
Echuca train users should know by the end of February if the speed limit for passenger trains between Echuca and Bendigo will increase.
Member for Rodney Paul Weller asked Victorian Transport Minister Terry Mulder in parliament this week to commit to increasing speed limits.
Mr Mulder said he would wait until work on the line was completed in February before making an announcement.
Passenger trains on the line are restricted to 75km/h.
Mr Weller said he would like the speed limit raised to 100km/h once work was complete.
‘‘He told me he would wait until works were expected to be completed in February. There is still work to be done on rail crossings closer to Bendigo,’’ Mr Weller said.
‘‘The State Government has spent $5 million on installing booms and bells to make the line safer. We should be able to take advantage of this by having faster trains.
‘‘I am constantly hearing people who use the service say that they are sick of travelling in a train watching cars go past them.’’
Mr Weller said there would be a tremendous benefit to having trains travel faster.
‘‘It might be 15 minutes quicker, but on a return trip, that can save someone a half-hour each trip,’’ he said.
While Mr Weller did not have exact figures, he said the Bendigo-Echuca line was popular for residents in his electorate.
He also said he would like to see more trains traverse the line each day.
‘‘At the moment we have one service a day. I would like to see a second service — one which arrived in the morning and left in the early afternoon would be a great benefit for tourists and senior citizens in the community,’’ he said.
Mr Weller said he would keep Mr Mulder to his word and ask him again in February.
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