YET another carriage fault has halted a Border-bound V/Line train.
The latest problem disrupted the midday service out of Melbourne’s Southern Cross Station on Sunday.
Those travelling to Albury were switched to a non-stop coach, leaving at 12.30pm and scheduled to arrive about 3.30pm — earlier than the train’s planned arrival of 3.45pm.
A passenger said travellers were asked in Melbourne for their destination so they could be put on either the Albury bus or a train to Seymour, which connected by coach to towns such as Benalla and Wangaratta.
But the Albury coach did not arrive in the city until 4.30pm because a group of teenagers failed to listen to the instructions at Southern Cross.
They boarded the Albury bus — after the Seymour train had left — and said their destination was Wangaratta.
The driver felt he had no choice but to take them to Wangaratta, adding 45 minutes to the journey.
A V/Line spokesman said normal train services resumed yesterday.
“It was a carriage fault and it’s only affected the one service, that’s what I understand,” he said.
The spokesman was unable to identify the nature of the fault.
V/Line has been hamstrung by having one of its three Albury-Wodonga carriage sets out of action.
The carriage set, which is in V/Line’s maintenance sheds, is expected to return to service in a week or so.
A vandalised train on February 3 led to the cancellation of two services, both replaced by buses.
V/Line said its policy was to take damaged trains out of service immediately.
Albury-Wodonga services were plagued by cancellations about six months ago but, aside from running late, have had a relatively stable run in recent times.
The exception was the replacement in November of trains with coaches on two runs for two days as a result of broken springs on a carriage.
V/Line’s midday trains were replaced by buses for a week last month to allow for Australian Rail Track Corporation works.
The spokesman said at this stage there was no new track work that might force a return to coaches for some Albury-Wodonga services.
“We take notice from the track corporation whether they might be doing anything,” he said.
“There’s nothing on our radar at the moment.”