November 16th, 2013

Squee

Queensland Rail Fail

Many Queensland Rail (QR) trains have electronic/push button doors: push button, open door, I think everyone here can grasp the concept.

Wednesday morning, my train gets to its stop. I try to exit, and the door doesn't open. I hit again, as sometimes they can be slow to respond, still doesn't open. I look up the other end of the carriage - to see if it's a problem with this door, or both (sometimes they forget to hit the door release), but that door has opened. I try both buttons a few more times (there's one each side of the door), and start to panic, as this train makes a connection to a shuttle bus I need to catch, so I don't have time to chance going to the next station and getting a train coming back.

I ran down the length of the carriage - the guard blowing his whistle as I'm about halfway down (the trains don't sit at the stations for very long) and jump off before the doors begin to shut. As I'm right next to the guard compartment, and the guy is standing there, I just turn around and go "hey, the second door isn't working". I pretty much expect a "ok thanks" or a grunt, something minor and then to go on my way.

Guard: Which one?
Me: The second door there *points*
Guard: No one else has had a problem with it. *walks up, and uses the external carriage button to open the door* *walks back* You have to press and hold.
Me: I know, it wasn't opening.

As this has taken a minute or so, the station master has walked up.

SM: Everything ok?
Guard (It's hard to convey, but he used the most sarcastic/condescending tone): She reckons the door wasn't working.
Me: I don't "reckon", it wasn't working! I nearly missed getting off!
Guard: It's open now. No one else has had a problem.

At that point, I just kind of grumbled "have an awful day" or something (wasn't feeling witty) and walked off.

Now, usually, that's where this kind of thing ends - you never get to see what happens after. For this, I did though - a colleague was in the same carriage (she continued travelling as she works in a different building) said that after the train pulled away, the guard came in, and started bad mouthing me to the other passengers...who all then turned around and told him that yes, I tried both buttons, and no, it wasn't working - so, yay for random strangers at least.