Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Sadly, the Lions game was so predictable

...we are talking trains here.

The ARC encouraged people to use the trains to the Auckland game at Eden Park.

We tried to warn them.
The trains are broken, they won't go on time, they won't cope with the numbers.

So what a surprise when the Herald
reports on the front page the shambles:
Rugby fans who went by train to Auckland's rugby clash with the Lions last night described the service as embarrassing after standing in packed, stationary carriages and getting to Eden Park after kick-off.

Claire Teirney of St Heliers said she left from Newmarket at 6.25pm and arrived in Kingsland, a short walk from the ground, at 7.20pm. The game started at 7.10pm.

She called the rail service "an embarrassment, a complete shambles".

"I've been to international rugby games in Auckland last year and thought they would have fixed the problems, but they obviously haven't ... It was pretty much a disaster."

Angela Kenealy, of Remuera, waited 15 minutes inside a stationary, packed train carriage before it left Britomart about 6.20pm.

"Then it stopped at Newmarket for five minutes and we didn't see anyone get on or off."

She did not arrive at Kingsland until 7.20pm. "And there were fans waiting for trains behind us."

Angela Kenealy said she was standing in the train next to two Welshmen and an Englishman, who were angry.

"They were saying that any other city in the world would never have done this ... It raises huge questions."

A spokeswoman for rail operator Connex, Tessa Marjoram, said heavy passenger numbers had delayed two trains by 15 minutes.

"But as far as we're aware, people leaving before 6.40pm got to Kingsland before 7pm.

"It's very difficult to move that number of people in that time, but most people got here early as we requested."

Connex had a special deal of $2 for a return trip to the game from Britomart and Newmarket, and added extra services for the evening.

Tessa Marjoram said about 7000 passengers passed through Britomart.

One fan said the service did not improve after the game.

Michael Luxford said just one train was waiting at Kingsland. Lots of people had given up and set off on foot, hoping to catch a bus.

The spin from the ARC and Connex is just appalling. Laughable. Tragic. Unacceptable.

It is time the authorities faced the facts: you've blown it.


Blogger Charles said...

There is no spin - not even any comment - from ARC. That's certainly appaling.

Connex says, they told everyone they could handle 2500 extra passengers with the equipment they have. They actually moved 7500 to the game (slightly fewer after).

There were some delays, but remember SH1 at Meremere on drag days?

It should be a lot better, but it could have been a lot worse. Imagine if the signals had packed up at 5pm as they have done several times recently.

8:20 PM  
Blogger Miles said...

Charles you are so right.
Indeed it is a miracle the signals coped!

9:13 PM  

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