Restrictions on passenger numbers 'unworkable'
Restrictions on passenger numbers on buses and trains are unworkable for Woy Woy commuters, according to Member for Gosford Ms Liesl Tesch.
Under the Government plan announced on May 18, a maximum of 12 people are allowed on buses and only 32 passengers are allowed on each train carriage.
"Little further information has been provided by the government for commuters facing packed trains heading into the city during the morning peak, and back to the Woy Woy in the evenings.
"Restrictions have reduced the seating capacity of an eight carriage Oscar train from approximately 880, plus standing capacity, to little more than 200.
"Peninsula commuters don't have another option.
"We can't just wait for the next train or bus in 20 minutes or 30 minutes on top of a more than one and a half hour commute if the carriage or bus is already at the new limit," she said.
Ms Tesch said commuters would not know if seats were available until they get onto the train, with others potentially left on crowded platforms waiting for the next service.
"Are passengers supposed to look through the window and do a quick count of people from the platform to see if there are 32 people in the carriage before they hop on?
"The Government still hasn't explained how the restrictions will work in practice and there will be chaos as more people return to work."
Ms Tesch said Woy Woy was the second busiest station on the Central Coast with an average of 216,000 passenger journeys per month, yet was the last to board in the morning commute.
"Each work day there are 8000 trips to and from Woy Woy Station putting it only behind Gosford Station in terms of passenger numbers.
"Being the last station on the Coast usually means that Peninsula residents are boarding trains already full from the Central Coast stations further up the line," she said.
Ms Tesch said: "We should always be encouraging people to take public transport, and it should be the job of government to make it safe," she said.
"People shouldn't be turned away just because the government has failed in their duty.
"We're not seeing any additional services.
"We're not seeing extra staff deployed to assist with the explaining the changes."
Ms Tesch encouraged locals to keep working from home for as long as possible to avoid unnecessary travel and to continue to take advantage of the Central Coast lifestyle.
Media release, 27 May 2020
Liesl Tesch, Member for Gosford