PASSENGERS and V/Line staff say the train replacement coach service running between Bendigo and Melbourne has been a success.
Since December 28 all trains on the Bendigo, Ballarat and Sunbury lines have been replaced by coaches while work is carried out on the line.
Father-of-three Darren Hall, who lives in Castlemaine, said he was happy with the replacement service.
“The service has been good,” he said.
“I have no real gripes with it.
“We usually catch about five trains a month.
“The kids love it and the bus driver was really chatty.
“There have been some delays but they have been very accommodating.”
V/Line communications manager Colin Tyrus said the service was running smoothly from an operational point of view.
“A phenomenal amount of work has been carried out on the Regional Rail Link project since 28 December while coaches replace trains,” he said.
“More than 210 train replacement coach services are provided each week day on the Ballarat and Bendigo corridors, with more than 6000 V/Line customers using these services daily.
“V/Line has received customer compliments about the train replacement coach services and the efficient management of the arrivals and departures at Southern Cross Station and Bendigo.
“Customers are happy to be able to select an express coach or one that stops at all stations, according to their destination.”
There had been concerns from some passengers that some buses were leaving early however Mr Tyrus confirmed this was only when there were multiple departures for a service and the bus was full.
“We wouldn't leave people stranded,” he said.
“V/line is asking customers to check their timetables, as coaches do depart earlier and arrive later due to road conditions and we are asking customers to allow extra travel time.”
Replacement coaches are continuing until Sunday January 19 with trains expected to run as normal from next week.