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The truth about KiwiRail’s failures finally comes out

Labour Leader
Transport Spokesperson

24 August 2012 MEDIA STATEMENT
The truth about KiwiRail’s failures finally comes out

National is running KiwiRail into the ground with the company admitting it is planning to delay track maintenance, slash spending and ignore potential safety risks in a bid to save money, said Labour Leader David Shearer and Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford.

“KiwiRail has finally given up its legal bid to gag the media and to prevent the public release of a leaked document obtained by Labour that spells out the plan to downgrade our national rail network. We are pleased they have finally seen sense. The rail network belongs to Kiwis, we deserve to know the truth about its future under this Government,” said David Shearer.

“The report spells out plans for 181 redundancies and drastic cuts to track maintenance over three years that will send the network into decline, increase the risk of incidents and network failure, and worsen the quality of the network even on rail lines already deemed a safety risk.”

Phil Twyford says the report shows KiwiRail is planning to deliberately neglect its network, run down the asset and undermine its own efficiency.

“This is completely irresponsible and poses a threat to the organisation as well as to safety. The Government is putting KiwiRail under incredible pressure, while wasting billions on uneconomic holiday highways.

“It makes no sense for KiwiRail to sack 181 workers and defer three years of capital investment so it can save $200 million for capital investment. Improving the network is exactly what KiwiRail should be doing to reduce journey times in order to compete more effectively with long haul trucking.

“The problems all stem from the Turn-Around Plan that this Government is forcing on KiwiRail. It should throw that plan out and start again so that New Zealanders can have confidence in our rail network once again,” said Phil Twyford.

Download the report here:

Scoop copy: KiwiRailInfrastructureandEngineeringBusinessPlan.pdf [PDF, 6MB]

© Scoop Media

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