Queensland’s Western and South Western train lines have been repaired and reopened after severe flooding forced parts of the rail network to close for weeks.
Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey thanked crews who worked quickly and safely to repair more than 4,000 metres of track.
“Thanks to the efforts of 75 workers, the Western, West Moreton and South Western lines have now reopened to passenger and freight services,” Bailey said.
“More than 1140 tonnes of large rock and 2500 tonnes of ballast has been laid under the track, to restore vital rail infrastructure and enable services to operate safely.
“The large rock was used to help improve the flood resilience of the line in the event of large weather events.”
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Queensland Rail’s Acting Head of Regional Wayne Prosser said the floods caused trees to fall onto tracks, washouts and scouring which closed sections of track at multiple locations including Rosewood to Toowoomba, Jondaryan to Miles and Wyreema to Warwick.
Goondiwindi to Thallon and Dalby to Meandarra were the final sections to reopen in January as crews had to wait for water to recede to inspect and repair the damage.
“The Goondiwindi region experienced the heaviest downpour with the section to Carrington suffering significant washouts hundreds of metres long and up to one metre deep,” Prosser said.
“The Meandarra branch closed mainly due to water overtopping bridges, including at Condamine where the river rose 1500 millimetres above rail height and built-up debris caused alignment issues which have now been fixed.”
Queensland Rail teams coordinated heavy machinery such as excavators, tip trucks, loaders, track resurfacing consists and road trains to support ground staff and engaged the assistance of local earth moving companies.
Bailey said flooding in the Wide Bay region over the weekend had seen the North Coast line close temporarily.
“About 300 metres of track was in need of repair following the extreme rainfall and crews worked swiftly to ensure services were back up and running as soon as possible.”
Queensland Rail will continue to monitor the rail systems through 43 weather stations.