Jeremy Holmes, spokesperson for the Byron Bay Railroad Company
(BBRC) claimed that a video of train serial number 721, shown on
the (unofficial) Byron Bay Train Facebook site is a different train
to the one it will operate and is operating under vastly different
conditions (Byron Shire Echo, 8 February 2017).
In fact, the featured train is exactly the same train BBRC was
then showing in its advertising, train carriage serial number 721.
Readers can see side-by-side images to prove this on the same FB
While the train in the video might not be the exact same train,
it is the same type of train, and it gives an indication of the
very disturbing noise levels to be expected in the future.
If or when the BBRC train operates under solar generated
electricity, there may be no exhaust noise, but Mr Holmes cannot
counter that the screech and clatter from the steel wheels on steel
rails in the video is substantial, and that this will be replicated
in situ in Byron Bay.
It would be helpful if Mr Holmes released a video of the train
BBRC intends to use to avoid further confusion and misinformation
about the trains green credentials and noise.
We also ask Mr Holmes to be crystal clear about his companys
intention to operate the train at higher frequencies than the
initial 28 passes a day.
He and his employer clearly stated to our representatives that
they could and would if they saw fit, run the train at a frequency
of up to four times per hour in each direction or potentially 120
passes per day.
Such intensive use would presumably require a higher dependency
on the diesel engine, which would not only add to the noise levels
but also make it a non-solar train.
Mr Holmes has invited readers to contact him with any questions
they might have over the train.
As residents, please ask him about his intentions to operate the
train at the much higher frequencies it is capable of, and what
this would mean for its solar credentials.
You should also ask if he is happy to cap the usage at a level
that takes into account the requirements of those living along the
corridor, or using the Kendall Street crossing.
Readers might also ask council how this train was approved in
the first place, and whether it is prepared to place a formal cap
on frequency that might limit the impacts on the environment and
residential amenity to more reasonable levels.
The community needs more clarity from Mr Holmes and BBRC. And it
needs council to stand up for the community and place a cap on the
frequency with which the train can operate.
Paul Belin, secretary, Action Group