There are more suicides on railway lines in Victoria than any other state, and Euroa MP Steph Ryan wants to know why.
In the past four years, 227 fatalities were recorded on Victoria's railways.
"I was fairly shocked to read that number," Ms Ryan told Parliament this week.
"We have a very real issue in this state that is largely escaping attention. We know that most of those fatalities have been suspected suicides, while some others have been from people who have been struck by trains or who have slipped and fallen."
She said the issue required a wider discussion including inadequate mental health services as well as rail operators.
"I think that is something that the government and the Parliament perhaps seriously need to consider," she said.
"One possible explanation is the fact that our complicated rail arrangements leave the fencing and protection of train lines from the public more open."
The discussion came as the Parliament's lower house passed proposed legislation for Victoria to join up to the national rail safety law and rail safety regulator, to be based out of South Australia.
IN OTHER NEWS:
Benambra MP Bill Tilley also joined the discussion in Parliament, saying safety was paramount in establishing a national rail policy, especially now that train travel on the North East line, which used to take three to three and a half hours, has blown it to more than four.
"The track is a minefield of mud holes and drainage bogs that soften the track's foundations and make the train jump and bounce which rattles the trains, passengers and staff alike," he said.
"We are now experiencing the problems and we are hearing the 'he said, she said' and the blame game across all levels of government ... The unfortunate thing is that the line is not improving and we are not necessarily getting close to it."
While he supported the legislation, Mr Tilley said he still had concerns about rail safety.
He said it was unlikely that heavy trains could now get derailed on the line, but it should be considered with a new generation of VLocity trains coming onto the tracks in the next few years.
"If we do not address this infrastructure, or those that are charged with the responsibility of fixing that infrastructure, heaven help us - touch wood - we do not want to see some tragedy on any part of our rail system," he said.
If you or someone you know needs help, you can phone Lifeline on 131 114 or the Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 657 467.