Saturday, February 18, 2012

The Laverton train will not run today

"The ??? p.m. Laverton train will not run today." Is this familiar to you? Well, this is my most dreaded and detested announcement from the station's loudspeaker at North Melbourne.

To exacerbate my frustrations, I often have to watch helplessly two Werribee trains and two Williamstown trains come and go before the next available Laverton service.  The Werribee and Williamstown trains run on the same train tracks as the Laverton trains but do not take me home to Altona. Newport is the closest station that I can alight with these trains but this is still a long distance from home. I always feel stranded, deserted and question: "Why can others go home but not me?" However, I firmly believe that it is not a mistake for me or anyone else to live in Altona.

An all-powerful voice from the master control room at Flinders Street station would then reverberate in my ears: "There is a shortage of trains on the Werribee line today. Not a problem. We can easily fix this by diverting some services from the Laverton route or cancelling the Laverton services".

No train today, my love has gone away
No train today, it seems a common sight
But people passing by don't know the reason why

No train today, it wasn't always so
But all that's left is a place dark and lonely ...


Rachel said...

Hi Anthony. I now understand the frustrations of Altona commuters. My son now goes to Suzanne Cory High School in Werribee. He must get from North Williamstown to Newport and then out to Hoppers Crossing. Nothing connects easily or logically and we dread a cancellation as there are ramifications further down the line.

Did you see the article in The Age on 16/02/12 "New train services go 'nowhere near'end of line"? Of the 185 new weekly trains on the Werribee line, only 117 actually go all the way. 47 run off-peak between Laverton and Newport stopping at the Altona stations and 21 terminate at Laverton.

Anonymous said...

As a fellow laverton line user, I have now taken to working backwards when the laverton are cancelled; jumping on the first werribee express that turns up, and working my way backwards from laverton taking the flinders st train. Works if the laverton train coming back isn't cancelled.

Anthony Ang said...

This is a good suggestion. Will try it the next time.

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