The North East service has failed to consistently reach punctuality and reliability targets for the fourth consecutive year.
Analysis of VLine performance data from January 2015 to December 2018 showed punctuality on the North East line fell to a four year low last year.
In 2018, the service did not reach its monthly punctuality target at all.
On average over the 12 months only 73.0 per cent of services were on time – well below the target of 92.0 per cent punctuality.
In 2015, the service averaged a 91.7 per cent punctuality score over 12 months, in 2016 79.7 per cent and in 2017 77.9 per cent.
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A VLine spokesman said copper wire thefts caused many delays in 2018.
He said planned upgrades would address the cause of delays.
"Any train delay is frustrating and we apologise to our passengers on the Albury line when journey times are longer than planned,” he said. "There is now a plan in place to address the factors causing delays, by upgrading track and signalling through the $235 million North East Line Upgrade.
"This important project will also enable modern VLocity trains to be deployed on the Albury line for the first time, providing further improvements for passengers."
The spokesman said compensation was available for passengers affected by significant delays.
Reliability on the North East line in 2018 was also lacking, with more than six per cent of trains cancelled or replaced with buses.
On average of 93.6 per cent of services ran as scheduled in 2018, less than the 96.0 per cent target set by VLine.
However the North East line met or exceeded the 96 per cent target during four months of the year and achieved 100 per cent reliability in November.
The previous year, in 2017, a yearly average of 90.6 per cent of services ran as scheduled, compared to 94 per cent in 2016 and 95.4 per cent in 2015.
Already 2019 speed restrictions have affected services on seven separate days, mostly due to extreme heat.
Extreme heat is expected to affect services during the first half of this week.
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