Like most people and organisations, we are all coming to terms with the impacts of Coronavirus (COVID-19) and how we best respond. It’s especially important when you are running a railway network that all Australians rely on to ensure their freight reaches its destination, and that essential workers travel on to get to their job.
Central to everything we are doing at ARTC is the health, safety and welfare of our people and the communities in which we operate. It’s a real balance and we understand the community are going to have questions about the works we are doing and why we are doing them in these uncertain times.
The Steps we are taking in response
- Activation of business continuity plans and other arrangements to support and isolate critical business functions such as network control
- For maintenance and projects works – strict guidance around social distancing, working in groups, hygiene practices, interactions with the community and regular health and hygiene checks
- Working from home arrangements in place for a large sector of our staff
- Limiting all non-essential and domestic travel and delivering as much work where possible with locally based employees and contractors (rather than intra or interstate workers)
- Working with our contractor partners and suppliers to ensure appropriate standards are in place for workers and de-scoping non-essential project works.
- We continue to actively work with the Government and health authorities to understand and mitigate the impacts of the coronavirus, and to guide our own decision-making.
View our latest news here
Update from our CEO here
What measures has ARTC implemented in response to COVID-19, in particular for Network Control Centres?
ARTC has implemented a range of preventative measures across the organisation to ensure all our staff are appropriately protected and supported. With regards to our Network Control Centres, we have limited access to essential staff only as part of other preventative measures to help safeguard the critical services that our NCCs perform to ensure the safe operation of our rail network.
How will ARTC manage the rail network if you have an outbreak of COVID-19 or a shortage of staff?
ARTC maintains business continuity plans for priority activities, which cover the loss of availability of critical staff and workplaces. Scenario planning continues to be undertaken to work through additional contingency plans specific to this situation.
Why are people from ARTC still going to work?
ARTC provides an essential service as part of the national freight and transport industry, and it is within current government guidelines that workers who cannot work remotely may go to work.
What is the definition of an “essential service”?
The freight and logistics sector has been declared an essential service by State and Federal Governments – and this includes the ARTC rail network. Given the impact of COVID-19 on the increase in demand for goods, the freight supply chain is critical to ensure supplies get to customers around the country.
If an ARTC worker gets tested for COVID-19, what happens to other staff in the workplace?
If a person who has been in the workplace is tested for COVID-19, people who have come into close contact with that person within 24 hours of the person showing symptoms, will then work from home and must remain away from the workplace until either 14 days have passed, or the person returns a negative test.
Who can access ARTC workplaces during the pandemic?
Only visitors deemed essential may enter ARTC workplaces at this time.
Are you continuing with work on the Inland Rail project?
Yes. This is a vital project and will provide much-needed jobs and support the economy.
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