Beverley McArthur MP
Member for Western Victoria Region
NO ROOM ON THE TRAIN IF YOU ARE IN A WHEELCHAIR
Member for Western Victoria Region, Bev McArthur has sought clarification from the Minister for Public Transport, The Hon. Melissa Horne MP, over the State Government’s failure to provide adequate wheelchair seating areas on V/Line services.
Mrs McArthur said a constituent has sought her support in progressing the important issue of wheelchair access on the Warrnambool to Melbourne train line.
Mrs McArthur said that given the State Government had failed to provide new and better trains even with $104 million dollars provided by the Federal Government, the Minister could not expect affected constituents “to wait until some new train was forthcoming.”
She asked the Minister to “provide a logical reason why adequate wheelchair seating areas are not provided on our V/Line Services now”. Mrs McArthur said she looked forward to V/Locity trains eventuating between Warrnambool and Melbourne. However, given the Labor Government has seemingly walked away from this promise, the likelihood is minimal.
In June 2019, Jacinta Allen MP informed the parliament that “there is $100 million for the Warrnambool line upgrade, and that would be great for Warrnambool because not only would it bring extra services, but it would also bring VLocity trains to that community for the very first time.”
However, the Final Impact Statement for the Warrnambool Project Line Upgrade project states that “only the 12 base scope level crossings in the level crossing options paper will be upgraded, as loco-hauled services can operate over the remaining level crossings and train speeds will not be increased.”
This means no V/Locity trains between Warrnambool and Melbourne, and frequently difficult or no access for the needs of physically impaired constituents.
“It is appalling that wheelchair bound Western Victorians have to suffer an inadequate train service, and that Labor, despite having committed to improving the service, has no plans to introduce V/Locity trains with better facilities for all passengers.
“It is obvious that Labor prioritises tens of billions of dollars on metropolitan rail but leaves Western Victorians with substandard services,” Bev McArthur concluded.
17 May 2019 Contact:
Bev McArthur MP 0418 593 169