Council Decisions On Train Fail Wednesday


On Wednesday afternoon the Council will announce what transport  plans it has for this coming Saturday’s Eden Park match after it receives the report from Auckland Transport on the train fail.

Some people missed at least  the opening ceremony.

This morning Auckland Transport has launched a site and phone line for those Rugby World Cup ticket holders who were caught in the train disaster.

By 5pm, 56 people have completed it.

There is  a phone hotline 0800 301 011 and website for those with unredeemed tickets.

All those who register  need to provide their RWC 2011 ticketing customer ID, full name and address of the ticket purchaser and their ticket allocation details (entry, section, row and seat).

Mayor Len Brown promised yesterday that no-one who missed out because of the transport failures which included train and ferries would be out of pocket.

“Tens of thousands of Aucklanders have had a fantastic few days and really embraced Rugby World Cup 2011 and festivities surrounding it,” he says. “But unfortunately some people were hugely disappointed at missing out- and I’m disappointed for them.”

There is yet to be a decision on who has to compensate - likely to be either the train provider Veolia or Auckland Transport or both. The Government says it’s not their problem -and criticised Auckland authorities for the mess.

The Greens insist it’s the Government’s problem.

This afternoon he said establishing the database is an important first step in ensuring some form of redress for those who missed the match.

A Council Committee will consider the report on Wednesday afternoon and it will be made public.

As part of the report, Auckland Transport asked Veolia to cover the issues of:

  • on-board security
  • improved communication with customers
  • ventilation on trains
  • passenger health and safety
  • more rapid response to operational issues
  • the use of extra buses in the event of train failures

In the latest idea to come forward since the Train Fail, former North Shore Mayor Andrew Williams suggests a temporary busway to service Eden Park, which he suggested in the early days of the RWC planning.

“All they need to do is temporarily dedicate a convenient route such as Upper Queen Street, connecting to Ian MacKinnon Drive and onto Dominion Road. Or alternatively use Symonds Street and New North Road, to create a fast efficient ‘busway’ on match days. A large fleet of buses could be leaving continuously from downtown, midtown and uptown to run along this controlled route, and the same route back after the games.”

In the Friday Train Fail, passengers sick of the lack of communication and hard-to-breathe crowded conditions on a train near Newmarket, pulled the emergency button to get out and decided to try to walk along the tracks to the game. Train services backed up and once people were on the tracks, services stopped.

In one of the over 100 comments on AKT about Friday’s woes, Claire wrote:

We arrived at Britomart around 6 to get a train to the game.

Our biggest frustration was lack of communication. At that point if there had been communication about the problems, we could have made an informed decision to walk, or get onto one of the empty buses and made it in time. Instead they directed us into the station in a queue that seemed to be moving smoothly, packed us on to the platform and then left us for half an hour.

Then 4 trains arrived and we were shuffled on to those, only to stand trapped and suffocating in the carriage for 45 mins, on a train which never left.

Again, no communication. It was lucky the crowd was well behaved. It certainly had the ingredients for a fatal crush situation if a few had started panicking.

Eventually an uninformed fluro jacket suggested we get off and run to the game. We missed the entire opening ceremony. If only someone had told us as we entered that trains had already stopped, we could have made it. I’m completely gutted that we missed out.


Frustration as RWC ticketholders can't get to Eden park on Friday

Tweets from train passengers on Friday captures the desperation:

  • Auckland transport is so bullshit. In between Newmarket and Britomart, everyone is getting so pissed off
  • For the past hour I’ve been stuck on the train.
  • Suffocating on train, but lucky to be on at all. Passing stations with 100s waiting
  • Over 2 hours later…… Arrived at Britomart, another train had to pick us up, jumped from across onto that train.
  • What a mission! Our trip TO Eden Park from Meadowbank took 2 and a half hours. By train - then bus - then walk - then taxi - then walk again
  • Tried to get home (two stops) on train. Bad idea. One train went by in 40 mins en route to Eden park. Jammed. People not happy. Gave up
  • Woah. Two trains arrived and they were beyond PACKED!
  • Tried to get home (two stops) on train. Bad idea. One train went by in 40 mins en route to Eden park. Jammed. People not happy. Gave up
  • From the #rwc tweets I’m seeing, the message seems to be “best transport is to walk” 2 hrs on train from Kingsland to Britomart?!
  • train!! TOTAL crush, everyone squeezed against each other. Like the Tube x 10

Fortunately for Auckland, most international media have not reported Auckland’s shocking transport failure -and the problems on the waterfront that night.


Key said it’s Auckland’s problem not Government’s responsibility

Over 100 comments on Friday night’s disaster as it unfolded

Auckland escapes a bullet - most global media don’t mention the Auckland failure

Urgent review ordered

Government attacks transport fail

What happened in Queen St when pedestrians took over

Photos from the craziness on the streets

What Party Central looks like




  1. Chris says:

    What needs to change:
    1) I think that the majority of the larger trains need to shuttle between Otahuhu and Britomart rather than head all the way to Papakura. This leaves the trains with fewer carriages to shuttle between Papakura and Otahuhu, with a few long trains doing the full distance to either Britomart or Eden Park.
    2) Air conditioning on trains better managed.
    3) More detailed communication at stations and on trains.
    4) Better organisation for crowd movement.
    3) Close Queen Street for big games.

  2. James says:

    I think that they should have Britomart for the waterfront celebrations and the Strand for Eden Park or other around.
    And definitively have crowd control and communication as we were looking for the bus stop and we had to look for a road cone with an A4 piece of paper saying Northern Express….not good!

  3. Peter in Sydney says:

    If there is another day when there are celebrations and a match on the same day then the timing of the two events must be separated so that the resources of PT will not be required to do two or three jobs at once. As was demonstrated on Friday it can’t.
    THEN trains need to be arranged for Eden Park patrons only which do NOT go to Britomart. The tracks are available to do this. From the Eastern line via the Strand , from the Southern line via a left turn at Newmarket. These trains would then simply return from whence they came for another trip. This is similar to what happens for the Western Line Eden Park game trains. It is all the unnecessary changing at Britomart that is the bottleneck. The most difficult decision would be to define what percentage of trains to dedicate to Eden Park Specials.

  4. Riccardo says:

    It looks to me if Britomart itself was the problem. No-one has mentioned the idea of only running South and East services straight to Eden Park.

    Most of the benefit of trains would have come from longer distance park and riders and shorter journeys handled by buses or walking.


Leave a Comment


XHTML: You can use these tags:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>