Cathy Birch

Since starting at the RTBU, I have conducted a signal box audit, which involved visits to every signal box in the Metro network. There are many issues being raised by signallers, which are being addressed by RTBU Delegates at the signalling department monthly meetings.

The matters raised during the audit included issues of safety, comfort and Enterprise Agreement compliance.

Some of these issues are;

  • Getting women’s trousers onto the uniform order form. This was a win for the female signallers in my first month at the RTBU.
  • Signallers have started being trained in the new Safety Critical Communication Standard Operating Procedure which was brought into effect in January 2017.
  • Vacancies in the Signalling grade is a major concern.
    • The signalling department is short staffed and too often members who go off sick can’t be replaced and the signallers on the shifts before and after are then expected to work twelve hours.
    • Signallers routinely work 12 shifts per fortnight. I am in the process of writing to Management about this as it needs to be rectified.
  • Printing safe working circulars is problematic when printers are so old, broken or temperamental and are no longer supported by IT. I am currently in discussions with Management and will continue to report as progress is made.
  • I have also discovered via the Signal Box audit that Signallers at several locations have no basin in the toilet area and major building faults. This is not good enough. I have reported this to Management and to date nothing has been done therefore I have raised it with Luba Grigorovitch to escalate this major issue with PTV.

These are just some of the issues that were raised during the audit, and the RTBU along with Delegates are taking steps forward to resolve and address these issues as soon as possible.

If you are a signaller and were not present when I visited your signal box, feel free to give me a call on 0403 863 869 or send me an email at to raise any issues that you believe need to be resolved.