THE Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) is carrying out a critical major maintenance shutdown of the Hunter Valley Network from 10-12 August 2021.

ARTC group executive Hunter Valley Wayne Johnson said after review of priority work and the current situation, the maintenance work must go ahead, with each priority job undergoing an in-depth review to ensure the safety of the workforce and the community amidst the current COVID-19 outbreak.

“We understand that the community in many parts of NSW, and now the Hunter, is facing a challenging time with the latest COVID outbreak, and want to reassure everyone that the work which is being done on the track is absolutely critical in ensuring that freight can continue to move across the country,” Mr Johnson said.

“Freight is an essential service. This work ensures that the Hunter Valley network’s vital supply chain for freight delivery and communities and the economy can keep moving safely. We have cut back on maintenance and ramped up our procedures to ensure we are diligent in doing all we can to protect the community and our workers.”

Mr Johnson said ARTC and its contract partners are closely following the NSW Health advice and have adapted work practices on our national network to adhere to the latest restrictions.

“We will continue monitoring this advice and follow protocol as new information comes to light,” he said.

“The work will start from around 6:30am on Tuesday, August 10 and is expected to be completed about 8:30pm on Thursday, August 12.”

ARTC said the Hunter Valley rail network continues to play a vital role in the transport and supply chain – and in supporting the Hunter, New South Wales and Australian economies.