Labor to improve safety on our trains by reinstating guardian services


A Foley Labor Government will reinstate guardian services on late night trains across the rail network to improve security and help get people home safely.

Under the Liberals, safety and security on our rail network has been a growing concern for commuters – especially those travelling late at night.

A Labor Government will invest $4.3 million to make late night travel safer by:

  • Re-introducing Guardian train services. Dedicated services will operate on Friday and Saturday nights from 9:30pm to as late as 2:15am across the network (full list of train lines below); and
  • Introducing an all-night train service from Kings Cross to Town Hall and Central Stations on Friday and Saturday nights. The service will run both ways every 15 minutes on Friday and Saturday nights between 1:00am and 5:15am. Stations and train services will be staffed by Transit Police.

Guardian Train Services are dedicated late night rail services with extra security for passengers. They were introduced in October 2010 by the previous Labor Government.

The Liberals scrapped Guardian services in 2014 – leaving many commuters concerned about security on late night trains.

The Liberals also left security on our trains consistently understrength – leaving security gaps across the network.

Commuters now feel less safe on our train network. The NRMA’s Seeing Red on Rail survey of 11,000 commuters found that 38 per cent do not feel safe on our trains at certain times of the day.

A recent Auditor General report found that in 2014, complaints regarding security issues have increased by 26 per cent.

Quotes attributable to Labor Leader Luke Foley:

“Commuters deserve to feel safe and secure on our trains – especially when travelling home late at night.

“Under the Liberals, commuters feel less safe as a result of less security and the cancelling of Guardian services.

“Guardian Train Services give rail commuters piece of mind about getting home safely on Friday and Saturday nights.

“We want to be encouraging more people to use public transport, which is why Labor will invest in improving security on the rail network.

“Knowing that there is assistance if other passengers are being anti-social, violent or abusive – especially at night – makes public transport a more attractive option for people coming home at night.

“Everyone who wants to use our trains should feel safe and secure. A Labor Government will introduce new Guardian trains right across the network so people travelling at night feel secure.

Quotes attributable to Shadow Minister for Transport Penny Sharpe:

“We have seen a significant downgrade of security on our rail network under the Liberals. This leaves passengers to fend for themselves if there is a threat to their safety on their train.

“One element overlooked by the Liberal Government in response to the tragic incidents involving excessive alcohol consumption in Sydney’s CBD is getting people out of the CBD swiftly and safely.

“That’s why Labor will introduce an all-night train service between Kings Cross and Central and Town Hall Stations for people travelling in and out of the city on Friday and Saturday nights.”

Key Facts:

  • The Liberals have cut security on the rail network – in 2011 there were 600 dedicated transit officers for trains and 300 commuter police attached to local area commands. The transit officers have been replaced by less than 600 officers in the Police Transport Command, who patrol not just trains but all public transport and assist other local area commands. This means there is a significant gap on the rail network when officers are pulled off trains to attend other duties.
  • There are approximately up to 150 Transport Officers across the whole public transport network but they do not fulfil a security function; their main role is fare compliance.
  • The Guardian services will operate on Friday and Saturday nights from 9:30pm to as late as 2:15am, and will include the following lines:

Eastern Suburbs & Illawarra Line – Bondi Junction to Cronulla

Airport & East Hills Line – Circular Quay to Campbelltown

Western Line – Central to Richmond & Central to Penrith

Blue Mountains Line – Central to Katoomba

Bankstown Line – Circular Quay to Liverpool

Inner West Line – Circular Quay to Homebush

South Coast Line – Bondi Junction to Kiama

South Line – Circular Quay to Campbelltown

Hunter Line – Newcastle to Telarah (until line is restored the service will depart from Hamilton)

North Shore and Northern lines – Central to Hornsby via Macquarie Park & Central to Hornsby Station via the North Shore

Newcastle & Central Coast Line – Central to Newcastle (until line is restored the service will arrive at Hamilton) & Central to Wyong

Read more about Labor's plan to help people get home safely on our trains.