Apology over Melbourne train drama

A fatal train crash added to public transport disruptions affecting Melbourne's southeast corridor.
A fatal train crash added to public transport disruptions affecting Melbourne's southeast corridor.

Victoria's public transport boss has apologised after thousands of Melbourne train passengers endured long queues and delays on Monday night.

But Public Transport Victoria's Jeroen Weimar says commuters won't be compensated despite the "very difficult journey" for passengers on the Frankston, Dandenong and Sandringham lines.

The peak hour pain came after a fatal train crash added to public transport disruptions through the city's south east corridor.

"It was a long difficult evening," Mr Weimar told ABC radio on Tuesday.

"I'd apologise to all those passengers caught up in both the planned works - we've been talking about these planned works for many weeks now - and when you take out another rail for a tragic event like that, we have a limited number of options to play with."

Mr Weimar said PTV added an extra 20 to 30 buses cope with the crowds.

However, he rejected compensation for affected passengers, because fares paid to "keep the system going".

"We are undertaking the largest investment in infrastructure this state has ever seen," he said.

"I know it's painful, I know it's inconvenient, but this is to address the very problems we see."

The busy Sandringham line was closed from 4pm on Monday after a woman was hit and killed by a train in the beachside suburb Hampton.

The Sandringham line closure added to passenger delays from closures on the Frankston, Cranbourne and Pakenham lines for maintenance works.

Travellers waited up to an hour for replacement buses in queues stretching hundreds of metres, while trams on nearby lines were consistently packed.

Public transport minister Jacinta Allen conceded Monday was a "difficult night for passengers" but Victorians needed to be respectful to the elderly woman who lost her life.

"We work very hard to get people where they want to go and we will review and look at what happened last night," she told reporters on Tuesday.

"Any accident or incident on the network is a difficult one."

However, Opposition spokesman David Davis said the response just wasn't good enough.

"It was complete and utter chaos as people streamed across the bridge out onto the street," he said.

"It was a terrible tragedy, no one would take away from what has occurred here, but surely the government had the capacity in place to use part of the line."

He said commuters were doing all they could to avoid delays and traffic chaos caused by the rail closures, including working from home, or even hiring hotel rooms in the CBD.

Monday night's delays follow commuter pain over the school holidays during the state government's construction blitz, with nine train lines shut down in stages across the two-week period.

It also marks a week since vegan activists shut down a major Melbourne intersection, blocking trams and buses in the city centre.

Australian Associated Press