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Nice work if you can get it

The State Liberals have condemned the Weatherill Government’s decision to pay striking train drivers to attend today’s stop work meeting.

“Transport Minister Stephen Mullighan should be offering a profuse apology to those rail commuters who have been forced onto other forms of transport by today’s strike,” said Shadow Minister for Transport David Pisoni.

“The fact the Weatherill Government has paid train drivers to shut down the rail network speaks volumes of how badly this industrial dispute has been handled.

“Paying workers to strike just encourages further industrial action.

“Minister Mullighan needs to guarantee that this money hasn’t been wasted and that rail commuters won’t be inconvenienced by further strikes in the future.

“Adelaide’s rail network is already under-utilised and today’s strike will further damage public confidence in the reliability of the system.

“The repeated strikes and faults plaguing Adelaide’s rail network have resulted in a travelling public wary of relying on trains despite taxpayers spending more than $2 billion to upgrade the network.

“The Transport Minister also needs to release the SA Rail Commissioner’s report into the cause of the electrical fault that shut down the Tonsley and Seaford railway lines for two days in late April.

“It’s now more than four months since tens of thousands of commuters were inconvenienced by an electrical fault yet they are none the wiser as to why the system was shut down for two days.

“If the report is yet to be completed it indicates there are very serious problems facing the network.

“Commuters on the electrified rail network have the right to know if the service will need to be shut down again to properly fix the original fault.

“The Rail Commissioner promised a full investigation into the cause of the shutdown of the Seaford and Tonsley line after an initial report found two circuit breakers were the likely cause of the fault.

“Commuters on the Seaford, Tonsley and Grange railway lines have the right to know why they were stranded as a consequence of the failure of the electrified service and if they face future disruptions to the service.”