TranzRail Pulls The Plug On Train Trio
07th October 2001
"I can't, I can't, I can't" will be the swansong of the Kaimai Express, the Bay Express and the Geyserland Express trains today, as they wind through the countryside for the last time.
Flowers will be presented to the crew of the three trains when they arrive in Auckland for the last time by Green Party Auckland MP Keith Locke between 4.30pm and 5.15pm today.
Green Transport spokesperson Sue Kedgley farewelled passengers on the last train from Wellington to Napier this morning at 8.00am.
Transport spokesperson Sue Kedgley said the demise of the three trains, which follows the closure of the Hamilton-Auckland service on Friday, was a blow to the Kiwi can-do spirit.
"We were promised that privatisation would bring guts and vision. What it's actually brought is run-down carriages, closures and defeatism.
"Until the Government regains control of the track, the rail network will keep disintegrating. One day we will look back and wonder why on earth everyone just stood around and let one of our most important transport systems fall apart. We don't even have a national rail strategy yet."
Ms Kedgley said it was ridiculous to leave three trains and their carriages sitting idle and useless.
"TranzRail should have kept these services running until the sale of passenger services to Australian-based West Coast Railway is finalised and the trains are transferred elsewhere.
"Now people on these routes will be forced to travel by road, increasing traffic, while the trains sit empty in the yards."