Indian Pacific

Article

October 19, 2021

The Indian Pacific is an in-service railway line that connects the cities of Perth and Sydney in Australia. It was inaugurated on February 23, 1970 after the already existing lines were brought into line with the standard gauge. It is 4,352 kilometers in length and crosses three states.

Line

The line leaves Perth station and heads east towards Kalgoorlie. This section was built in narrow gauge and had to be converted to standard track in 1968. Despite this, there is still a change of locomotive and personnel at Kalgoorlie, switching from the Westrail (Western Australian Company) to the Australian National Railways. From Kalgoorlie, the line then crosses the Nullarbor Plain on the Trans-Australian Railway to Port Augusta. This railway line, directly built in standard gauge, completed in 1917 made it possible, in part, to accelerate the integration of Western Australia into the federation in 1901. This section contains the longest straight line of road of iron to the world (479 km) at the height of Cook. When it was built there were track gauge changes at both ends. The line then continues south to the coastal town of Port Pirie, before reaching Crystal Brook inland, then on to Adelaide, the capital of South Australia. The train then travels up to Crystal Brook from where the line then heads east through Broken Hill. The section from Port Pirie to Broken Hill was rebuilt in normal gauge in 1970 (before the rails were in narrow gauge). The one connecting Crystal Brook to Adelaide was built in 1982. Before that, the Indian Pacific did not go to Adelaide and passengers had to change trains at Port Pirie. From Broken Hill, the train continues through New South Wales to Parkes, then crosses the Blue Mountains and arrives in Sydney. In 2005, the train made stops of three hours at Broken Hill, Adelaide and Kalgoorlie and approximately one hour at Cook.

Travel conditions

The travel time between Perth and Sydney is four days. The pace of the Indian Pacific is on average 85 km / h, the maximum speed reached by the convoy is 115 km / h. Passengers can choose between single or double cabins or reclining chairs. The train can also carry passenger vehicles. The dining car offers a table d'hôte service. Finally, there is also a lounge bar.

The Christmas train

For the past few years, the Indian Pacific has been running a special Christmas train with famous singers on board. The train stops in various stations along the route where the singers perform, thus creating a local animation and making it possible to thank the inhabitants for their help in maintaining the line. These stops include the isolated villages of the Nullarbor Plain of Watson, Cook and Rawlinna. Among the artists who participated in this event, we can cite: David Campbell (2007), Human Nature (2006), Guy Sebastian (2005), Jimmy Barnes (2004), John Paul Young (2003), Marcia Hines (2002) , John Williamson (2001) and Nikki Webster (2000).

Accidents

On December 24, 1975, fourteen of the twenty-five cars on the eastbound train derailed due to a collapse of the bogie of the 1st car between the Haig and Turina stop. Three of the two hundred passengers were injured, the passengers flew from Forest to Adelaide. On August 18, 1999, the western train was accidentally redirected to the wrong track during a two-track passage allowing trains to cross in normal times. The train collided with the train coming from the east to Zanthus. On December 3, 1999, a CityRail train struck the rear of the train at Glenbrook in the Mountains

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