Tram testing and driver training now underway from Randwick to Circular Quay

Posted 1 August 2019

Tram testing and driver training is underway along the alignment from Randwick to Circular Quay. It is important that the trams are fully commissioned and drivers properly trained ahead of the first passenger services in December 2019.

Night-time testing 

Testing is initially done at night to test critical functions with the least amount of risk to pedestrians and traffic. During night-time testing we can also ensure traffic signals are fully operational, prior to testing with traffic during the day. Every tram also requires a minimum 2,500km of running time to be fully commissioned. This means that even after critical functions and traffic signal testing have finished, and daytime testing has commenced, trams will need to continue running at night. 

Daytime testing 

Daytime testing initially begins outside of peak traffic before expanding into all times of day. Daytime testing involves activities that are similar to those for night testing and will include testing safety functions such as the PA system and warning bells. The difference is that the trams will start to interact with more motorists, cyclists and pedestrians along the alignment.

Driver training

When operational the Sydney Light Rail service will require new drivers to operate the trams on the network. All new drivers must undergo training and complete a minimum amount of driving time in all traffic conditions along the alignment. Driver training occurs in conjunction with day and night-time tram testing.

Weekend testing

While tram testing and driver training is currently occurring on weekdays and week nights, we will shortly be introducing weekends to the schedule. The Sydney Light Rail service will operate 7 days a week, day and night, and our drivers need to train accordingly. Expanding testing to include weekends will also allow for drivers to work up their training hours and for trams to meet their minimum required running time ahead of first passenger services in early December.

Be sure to look out before you step out and follow traffic signals or traffic controllers. 

How will this affect me?

1. Tram movements

Trams may run up to every 8 minutes between 5am and 1am Monday to Friday. There may be additional tram movements between 1am and 5am where necessary. There will be fewer movements during weekends with most occurring between 6am and 10pm.•

2. Timetable testing

As we heads towards operational services, we will be mimicking timetable services to ensure the service functions properly and according to schedule. Timetables are currently being reviewed. However general operations are 7 days a week from 5.30am to 1.30am, with trams running every 4 minutes between 7am and 7pm.

3. Be aware, there’s a tram there! 

Please pay attention to hazard signs along the alignment. Signs have been installed where trams are being tested and warn of electrical and other hazards, including tram movements.

Be aware, stay clear of tracks and stops.

With the start of testing, construction fencing and barriers will gradually be removed along the alignment, exposing some of the newly completed tracks and stops. It is important to remember that trams are not servicing passengers and that we are still testing the system. Please do not approach stops or trams during this period. Always be mindful of light rail tracks and only cross at designated pedestrian crossings.

Remember to follow NSW road rules when driving or cycling near the light rail.

For more information: sydneylightrail.com.au 

This information has been prepared by ALTRAC Light Rail. View this as a PDF. Go to Sydney Light Rail on Facebook for more updates