Switch on to rail safety as new track goes live

Switch on to rail safety as new track goes live

Electrical engineers will soon flick the switch to send 25,000 volts of electricity through overhead wiring on the 7.5km track.

Public Transport Authority spokesman David Hynes said a period of commissioning and extensive testing of the electrification of the overhead wiring over the track was an essential part of the project.

‘The Transperth network has been electrified for many years, but this is the first time overhead wiring will be operational through this part of the northern suburbs,’ Mr Hynes said.

‘For this reason we are reaching out to the community ” to educate them about the possible dangers of high voltage wiring and train operations.

‘The electricity that will run through these lines is 100 times greater than that which goes through the average Perth home.’

Mr Hynes said through the PTA’s rail safety program, Right Track, Jonathan Beninca would visit Butler College to educate young people about the possible dangers.

Mr Beninca lost his right arm, right leg and a number of fingers on his left hand when he was run over by a train in Sydney.

Mr Hynes said people should be mindful of the appropriate way to behave around the Transperth network. ‘Trespassers can be hit with hefty fines ” or much worse,’ he said.

‘Electricity can travel along objects and arc ” or jump ” so keep away from the poles and wires and make sure not to accidentally touch overhead wires with things like kites, long sticks, rods or poles ” even liquids will conduct electricity if thrown near overhead wires.

‘People should also be aware that test trains will be running along the section of track many weeks ahead of the actual opening.’

Visit www.righttrack.wa.gov.au for more information.

Lucy Jarvis