Feb 09, 2019

Flooding cuts vital rail links

Flooding cuts vital rail links The train which was washed over at Nelia on Thursday.

Queensland Rail is counting the cost of North Queensland’s catastrophic flooding.

The flooding has had a major effect on Queensland Rail’s network, particularly the Mount Isa line, which remains closed between Stuart and Cloncurry.

The North Coast line also remains closed between Ayr and Cairns due to flooding.

Chief executive officer Nick Easy said detailed inspections to determine the full impact of the flooding could not be carried out until floodwaters receded.

“We will continue to provide updates, as further information becomes available, on the status of the network and timeframes for recovery work,” Mr Easy said.

“Spirit of Queensland and Inlander passenger services are experiencing cancellations and impacts due to this unprecedented weather event.

“Where possible, replacement road coaches will be arranged, however this is subject to road conditions which are also currently impacted in many locations.”

Meanwhile, Queensland Rail is continuing to investigate damage to a stowed freight train in North-West Queensland on Thursday.

The train, which was laden with mineral products, was washed over at Nelia, about 300km east of Mount Isa.

It had one locomotive and 80 wagons, which were storing a mixture of products including zinc, lead and copper anode.

The train had been stowed at the location since January 31, as a precaution, due to heavy rain on the Mount Isa line.

“There is no access to the site, except via aerial inspections, which have confirmed floodwaters were continuing to impact the train yesterday (Friday),” Mr Easy said.

“It is understood that some product has spilled into floodwaters.

“Queensland Rail is working closely with Pacific National, Glencore and the Department of Environment to more clearly understand the impacts of this incident based on the information currently available.”

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