Rail industry

Over 720 members of the rail industry from Australia and New Zealand have celebrated the winners of this year’s Australasian Rail Industry (ARI) Awards at the Crown Towers in Melbourne. 

The 2022 Awards featured 16 categories recognising the achievements of individuals, organisations and rail projects. This included four new categories relating to rail supply chain, heavy haul and rail freight, passenger operations and infrastructure projects.

Australasian Railway Association (ARA) Chief Executive Officer, and ARI Awards judging chair, Caroline Wilkie, said the event showcased the achievements and innovation of those working in the rail industry.

“Tonight’s awards recognised the outstanding work taking place across the industry to deliver a fantastic customer experience, safe and efficient operations and sustainable outcomes for the community,” Ms Wilkie said.

“The judges were impressed by the innovation on show across the industry as it delivers a once in a lifetime pipeline of new projects and supports greater use of rail across our passenger and freight networks.”

This year’s winners featured a strong focus on technology, from the use of real time data to improve the customer experience of rail users with mobility issues, to the adoption of drones and other technology to improve track worker safety.

The winners are: 

Customer Service Excellence Award – Sydney Trains, Mobile Boarding Assistance Application

Heavy Haul and Rail Freight Excellence Award – Rio Tinto, Gudai-Darri Rail Project

Rail Innovation of the Year Award – Sydney Trains (Asset Lifecycle Optimisation for Track Asset Management)

Sustainability and Environment Excellence Award – Evolution Rail Consortium, Australia’s most state-of-the-art train maintenance facility

Safety Excellence Award – Aurizon, Leading for Safety Program

Diversity and Inclusion Excellence Award – Level Crossing Removal Project, Engineering Pathways Industry Cadetship

Wellbeing in Rail Award – Metro Trains Melbourne, Train Driver Trauma Recovery Guidebook

Infrastructure Project Excellence Award – Parramatta Connect

Passenger Operations Excellence Award – Queensland Rail

Supplier Excellence Award – SMEC

Young Rail Professional Award – Jonathan Chan (WSP) and Kelly Douglas (Metro Trains Melbourne)

Young Achiever Award – Chris Wills, John Holland Group

Emerging Rail Specialist Award – Andrew Lagos (Sydney Trains) and Donna Daly (Jacobs) 

Signalling and Systems Engineering Excellence Award – Sandesh Koyande (John Holland Group)

Career Achievement Award – Rebecca Want (GHD)

The Awards are supported by the Australasian Railway Association, Institution of Railway Signal Engineers, Railway Technical Society of Australia, Rail Track Association Australia, the Rail Industry Safety and Standards Board and the Permanent Way Institution (NSW).

All proceeds go to the TrackSAFE Foundation, a registered Harm Prevention Charity established by the industry to reduce near collisions, injuries, and fatalities on the rail network from suicide and reckless behaviour.

“It is exciting to see the range of ways technology is transforming our industry and making a real difference to how people interact with the rail network,” Ms Wilkie said.

“This is leading to tangible improvements to safety, efficiency and the customer experience.”

The Awards highlighted the significant range of rail projects underway across the country to increase network capacity and meet Australia’s long-term needs.

“The projects recognised tonight reflect the huge effort underway to build the future of rail and support a sustainable transport network for the benefit of all Australians,” Ms Wilkie said.

“The judges were impressed by the range of projects delivered over the last year as the impact of the pandemic has continued to be felt, and the outstanding results achieved by rail contractors and suppliers.

“It is also pleasing to see a strong focus on sustainability in the delivery of these projects.”

The Awards featured a range of individual awards for emerging leaders and young rail professionals, while GHD Sydney Market Leader – Transportation Rebecca Want won the Career Achievement Award in recognition of her significant contribution to the industry.

“The individuals recognised at the Awards reflected the incredible depth of talent that exists within the rail industry,” Ms Wilkie said.

“As we strive to attract more people to work in rail, tonight’s winners are fantastic examples of the rich and rewarding careers that can be forged in our industry.”

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