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Bus drivers use filthy facilities splattered with blood

BLOODY DISGRACE: Transport Workers Union state secretary Peter Biagini outside the Ipswich Transit Centre.
BLOODY DISGRACE: Transport Workers Union state secretary Peter Biagini outside the Ipswich Transit Centre. David Nielsen

SMASHED doors and windows, dirt and filth, a rank smell and a long trail of congealed blood on the concrete near the front door.

Two years after most of Ipswich was cleaned or set on the road to recovery, the Ipswich Transit Centre is still a shambles.

Worse still, the union that represents bus drivers say its members are forced to use it with a temporary lunchroom and port-a-loos.

The upgraded Riverlink bus station was opened in June with a dedicated meal room and toilet facilities but the union says it has proven inadequate.

Transport Workers Union state secretary Peter Biagini visited the transit centre yesterday to see it for himself, including syringes in the temporary toilets.

"TransLink put all the runs together and that's why there's a lunch room here because this is one of the places they stop," Mr Biagini said. "A lot of them are scheduled to stop over at Riverlink but it's not big enough over there so they've got to stop here.

It's disgraceful and the government needs to make a decision whether they're going to close it up and barricade it so no-one comes in and make bigger facilities over at the shopping centre or fix this place properly.

"It's disgraceful and the government needs to make a decision whether they're going to close it up and barricade it so no-one comes in and make bigger facilities over at the shopping centre or fix this place properly.

"The temporary solution is being broken into by members of the public which is risking the safety of drivers. They're saying - and I don't blame them - they're going to ban using it until it gets cleaned up. Probably a third of the drivers are women so it's bad enough men using these facilities."

Member for Ipswich Ian Berry blamed the previous government for the transit centre but said Riverlink was a good replacement.

"The former Labor government left the Ipswich Transit Centre derelict and did not allocate any funding to upgrade or reopen these facilities," Mr Berry said.

"The Newman Government encourages all drivers to use the new facilities at Riverlink. Riverlink is the major bus hub in Ipswich with the majority of routes in the region accessing the hub.

"This hub provides drivers with permanent toilet and meal room facilities."

He said he spoke to the Transport Minister who would talk with TransLink about the future of the Ipswich Transit Centre.

Topics:  ian berry ipswich transit centre translink transport workers union



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