Free ride on Wednesday

PREMIER Anna Bligh has announced free public transport for commuters today in response to a disastrous morning for CBD commuters.

There were lengthy delays for anyone headed into Brisbane yesterday morning, after a power fault near Roma St train station caused the rail network to shut down.

Passengers on the Ipswich-Rosewood line could only get as far as Milton station, where buses picked them up and took them the rest of the way.

Before 9am, inner city roads were congested with public buses, while taxi services were also flat out.

Commuters travelling by train, bus or car into Brisbane were told to expect delays of one hour - even after train services were restored about 9.15am - due to the backlog.

Rail Back on Track spokesman Robert Dow said the power failure at Roma St highlighted the fundamental weakness of the public transport network.

"It is a house of cards," he said.

"One card falls and the entire system folds in an escalating chain reaction of failure, including the road network."

"Another good demonstration today of why cross river rail needs immediate action don't you think? Service reliability of rail and bus is impacting negatively on the community. Everyone understands that some disruption is inevitable, but of late disruption is becoming commonplace."



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