Sydney Trains Agency Information Guide

Introduction

The Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009(GIPA Act) provides members of the public with a right of access to government information. The GIPA Act replaced the Freedom of Information Act 1989 (FOI).

Under the GIPA Act, each NSW Government department and agency is required to publish an Agency Information Guide.

This Information Guide provides a general description of:

  • our agency’s structure and functions
  • the way in which our functions affect members of the public
  • how members of the public can participate in policy formulation and provide feedback
  • the kinds of information we hold, and
  • information we make publicly available

Sydney Trains

Who we are

Sydney Trains is a New South Wales Government Agency, forming part of the Transport Portfolio, delivering rail services to the Sydney metropolitan area.  

In the Transport Cluster, Transport for NSW (TfNSW) is responsible for strategy, integration, coordination and improving the customer experience.  Transport operators, including Sydney Trains, focus on the provision of safe, clean, reliable and efficient transport services.

Our legislated mandate is to deliver, maintain and provide safe and reliable passenger rail services throughout the Sydney metropolitan area.

What we do

Sydney Trains provides metropolitan passenger rail services.

Sydney Trains is responsible for the safe operation, crewing and maintenance of passenger trains and stations. Sydney Trains also owns and maintains the metropolitan rail network and provide access to freight and passenger operators in the metropolitan area. Sydney Trains also maintains NSW Trains’ rolling stock and some of the NSW TrainLink rail network.

RailCorp is a  NSW government agency that holds rail property assets and rail infrastructure in the Sydney Metropolitan area and limited country locations in the state of NSW and makes these assets available to Sydney Trains for its operations.

Structure and functions

Coordination of GIPA functions in the Transport cluster

TfNSW’s Information Access Unit is responsible for centralised acknowledgement on behalf of, and referral of formal access applications to the following NSW Government agencies within the Transport Cluster:

  • TfNSW
  • Roads and Maritime Services
  • Sydney Trains
  • NSW Trains
  • Point to Point Transport Commissioner
  • Sydney Metro
  • State Transit Authority

TfNSW also provides resources to support Roads and Maritime Services, Sydney Trains and Sydney Metro process and make decisions on applications received by those agencies. Each Transport cluster agency remains responsible for making decisions regarding the release of information held by their organisation under the GIPA Act.

Organisational Structure

There are nine Directorates which make up the organisational structure of Sydney Trains:

  • Customer Service delivers quality and consistent day-to-day customer service by providing visible and empowered staff, accurate and timely information, a safe and secure journey and clean trains and stations. A key focus for Customer Service is to continually improve our customer satisfaction results to meet the standards our customers expect. Customer Service is implementing a sustainable customer-centric model to realign Sydney Trains’ focus from 'moving trains' to 'moving customers'. 
  • Engineering & Maintenance manages a $1.1 billion annual maintenance program on behalf of Sydney Trains and NSW Trains – delivering a safe, reliable passenger fleet and metropolitan rail network, to meet the expectations of our customers every day.
  • Finance and Business Services – provides finance, legal, governance, internal audit and investment management services to support Sydney Trains’ operational delivery.  Finance and Business Services is also responsible for the delivery and management of Information Technology (IT) infrastructure and strategic procurement functions.
  • Train Crewing and Support – focuses on train crew and their operational support. Train Crewing plays a critical role in providing safe, reliable train services to our customers.  Operations Support helps improve operational performance through strategic solutions.
  • Operations Delivery – responsible for service control and operations, including the Rail Management Centre, service planning, signal boxes and network security.  Operations Delivery also manages network incidents and emergency response for the network.
  • People & Corporate Affairs – oversees Human Resources Business Partners, communications, workplace relations and health services.  People & Corporate Services is responsible for attracting, developing and retaining a skilled workforce that can meet Sydney Trains' needs by supporting and inspiring employees and managers.  The Directorate is also responsible for facilitating ongoing communication between Sydney Trains, our customers, the media and members of Parliament - delivering community relations, public affairs, corporate communications, websites and digital communication channels.
  • Planning and Portfolio Delivery – Supports the implementation of reform of the railway to become more customer-focused, sustainable and ready to deliver world-class train services in Sydney.  This includes the ongoing value-capture initiatives and specific reform activities established under the Sydney Trains Reform Program.
  • Safety, Environment, Quality & Risk – Establishes and maintains Sydney Trains’ safety and environment systems and the strategic policies which underpin these systems.  The Directorate manages the relationship with the Office of the National Rail Safety Regulator (ONRSR), the Office of Transport Safety Investigation (OTSI), the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB), the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, and WorkCover NSW.
  • Future Network Delivery – oversees the significant program of works needed to build our network and cater for future growth, working to deliver extra services and better infrastructure to accommodate future demand.  This includes parts of the NSW Government’s $1.5 billion More Trains More Services program, new timetables, more than 20 infrastructure upgrades and enabling projects needed to successfully run more train services, the full integration of the Sydney Metro projects into our network and the delivery of the Rail Operations Centre (ROC).

The way in which our functions affect members of the public

Reliability and On Time Running

Sydney Trains works hard to meet its on-time running goals; however the performance of our trains can be affected by a number of things.

Sometimes events happen on the rail network that can cause trains to be delayed or not reach their destination.  These are generally referred to as ‘incidents’. It is important to note that a single incident can have more than one cause, and can delay more than one train.

Issues affecting reliability and on time running may include: signal, track, overhead wiring and points problems, customers taken ill on trains, extreme weather conditions or storms, floods, fires and speed restrictions.

Train Cleanliness

Sydney Trains is responsible for the cleanliness of carriages and stations and provided a 24-hour, seven-day cleaning service at depots and selected stations.

Safety

Safety is at the heart of Sydney Trains and includes the safety of customers, employees, contractors and the community.

To keep people safe and secure, Sydney Trains has a comprehensive Safety Management System to help the organisation meet and, in many cases, exceed the regulatory and statutory requirements.

Public participation and feedback

Sydney Trains welcomes feedback about the services it provides, and transport services and issues more generally.  Customers can visit the www.transportnsw.info webpage for information on transport services (including real-time status alerts), or to ask questions, provide feedback on a service or make a complaint.  Customers can also call the NSW Government Transport Information Line on 131500 (available 24 hours, 7 days a week) for information relating to rail, bus, ferry and light rail services.

Customers can also contact Sydney Trains for the following customer assistance and feedback services:

  • Sydney Trains’ Customer Relations Unit can be contacted by telephone on 1300 038 500.
  • TTY (teletypewriter service) for hearing and speech impaired customers telephone 1800 637 500.
  • For 24 hour assistance with ticket vending machines telephone 1800 808 822.
  • To report unclean train carriages or faulty equipment call the Transport Infoline on 131 500 and quote carriage number or location and nature of the fault.
  • To report security issues contact the train guard or station staff or telephone 1800 657 926.

Type of information held

Sydney Trains holds a wide variety of information concerning its operations, procedures, policies, along with data and other information relating to the management of the rail system in Sydney.

Sydney Trains also routinely collects information from its customers for administrative, planning and reporting purposes.

Sydney Trains is required to comply with the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1998 (NSW) (PPIP Act) and the Health Records and Information Privacy Act 2002 (NSW) (HRIP Act) when dealing with the personal and health information of its customers.

Information made publicly available

The following categories of information provide a sample of what is made publicly available on the Sydney Trains website:

Open access Information

Open access information is a category of information explained further below under ‘Information we must disclose’.

For further information, please contact the Information Access Unit by phone on 02 8202 3768 or by email toinformation@transport.nsw.gov.au.

How to access information we hold

The GIPA Act provides members of the public with a right to access government information.

There are four ways that members of the public can access government information held by Sydney Trains under the GIPA Act.

  • Mandatory proactive release (Open Access Information)
  • Authorised proactive release
  • Informal release
  • Access applications.

Information We Must Disclose

Information classified as Open Access Information must be made publicly available, unless it is not in the public interest to do so.

Sydney Trains makes Open Access Information publicly available on its website free of charge, including this publication (agency information guide), information about Sydney Trains tabled in Parliament (such as the Sydney Trains and RailCorp Annual Reports), policy documents, the Sydney Trains register of government contracts and the agency disclosure log of access applications.

Information Proactively Released

Sydney Trains is required to have a program for the proactive release of government information.

Proactive disclosure is the manner in which TfNSW considers making information publicly available where appropriate. The proactive disclosure of information helps provide the public with greater access to government held information.  Information proactively disclosed by Sydney Trains is made available on this website.

If information sought is not available on the Sydney Trains website, members of the public can suggest that information be proactively disclosed (if held).

Please forward any suggestions to the Information Access Unit by email to information@transport.nsw.gov.au

Informal requests for Information

Members of the public can request information from Sydney Trains on any topic of interest. If the information is clearly in the public interest to disclose, it will be supplied free of charge.

Sydney Trains may attach conditions to the informal disclosure of information. For example, we may provide access on a view-only basis where the requested information is sensitive and should remain confidential, but is relevant to the person making the request.

Under the GIPA Act, a right of review only applies for formal applications.

If you would like to make an informal request for information, please contact the Information Access Unit on (02) 8202 3768 or by email to information@transport.nsw.gov.au.

Formal access applications

In some cases, requests for information held by Sydney Trains will need to be made through the formal access application process.

To make a formal application for information held by Sydney Trains, an access application must:

  • be in writing and addressed to the agency
  • clearly indicate that it is a formal access application made under the GIPA Act
  • provide a payment of $30 (by cheque or credit card)
  • provide a postal address for correspondence in connection with an application
  • include such information as is reasonably necessary to enable the government information applied for to be identified

If your application does not meet the above requirements, it will be invalid and the application will not be processed. However, in order to help you make a valid application, we will contact you to provide advice and assistance.

You may make an online application for information.

OR

You may send your application by post with a payment by cheque or money order to:

Information Access Unit

Transport for NSW

PO Box K659

Haymarket NSW 1240

If you would like to make an access application, please see How to apply and FAQs on our website.

Formal access application fees and charges

Apart from the $30 application fee, the GIPA Act allows Sydney Trains to impose a charge of $30 per hour in order to process an application. The application fee counts towards the first hour of processing.

In processing a formal access application, Sydney Trains is required to ensure that it is dealt with efficiently and provides access to information requested at the lowest reasonable cost.

A 50% discount in processing charges will apply if an applicant demonstrates they fall within any of the following categories:

  • A member of the public suffering financial hardship
  • The information applied for is of special benefit to the public
  • The holder of a current Pensioner Concession Card
  • Full-time students
  • Non-profit organisations

Please note that the 50% discount applies only to processing charges and not to the $30 application fee.

If applying for your own personal information, Sydney Trains cannot charge for the first 20 hours of processing.

For further information about fees and charges, please see the Fees and Charges section on our website, or contact the Information Access Unit on (02) 8202 3768 or by email to information@transport.nsw.gov.au.

Requests for personal information can also be made under the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1998.

Review rights

You have the right to request a review of certain decisions made by Sydney Trains in response to a formal access application. For further information, please view the NSW Information and Privacy Commission’s publication ‘Your review rights under the GIPA Act’.

Contact us

For further information relating to the disclosure of government information held by Sydney Trains, the Information Access Unit can be contacted on the details below:

Post                Information Access Unit

                        Transport for NSW

                        PO Box K659

                        Haymarket NSW 1240.

Email              information@transport.nsw.gov.au

Phone             02 8202 3768

For more information about the GIPA Act and your right to access information (including review rights) contact the NSW Information and Privacy Commission:

Post                GPO Box 7011

                        Sydney NSW 2001

Email              ipcinfo@ipc.nsw.gov.au

Web                http://www.ipc.nsw.gov.au

Phone             1800 472 679