Wellington Scoop

Two-hour delays for morning travellers on Kāpiti and Johnsonville trains

There were delays of more than two hours on two of Wellington’s three commuter train lines this morning.

At 8am, MetLink advised that a mechanical fault had delayed the 6.26 service from Waikanae to Wellington – the train was delayed at Linden. “Please expect large delays along the line,” said MetLink.

A few minutes later, it said all services on the Kapiti line had been “suspended”. It explained this was because of the broken down train at Linden.

At 8.45, MetLink said it was starting to organise buses. It said it was “sorry for this disruption on the last day before the long weekend – we will send updates on buses as soon as we can confirm timings.” Then it said buses were limited, and it repeated its advice that there would be delays.

At 9am the news about buses was not encouraging. MetLink advised:

There are limited bus replacement services running between Wellington and Porirua. We recommend alternative transport at this time. Please expect significant delays.

At 9.45, a small improvement: Kapiti train services were running between Waikanae and Porirua.

And at 10.20, the problem had been fixed – train services were running again between Wellington and Waikanae, though with delays.

Meantime there was trouble on another line.

At 8.20, services on the Johnsonville line were suspended between Wellington and Ngaio “due to an overhead power fault.”

MetLink (again) apologised for the inconvenience. Then at 9am:

Train services are running between Ngaio and Johnsonville, these train services will not be running to timetable. We are trying to organise bus replacements between Wellington and Ngaio, however, we recommend alternative transport at this time. There are a number of Metlink bus services that travel along this route including the 44, 45, 52 and 53.

Please expect significant delays.

At 10.30am, MetLink said it had organised buses between Wellington and Ngaio, with trains running between Ngaio and Johnsonville.

At 1.45, things had been fixed and a normal service was resuming The first train was departing from Wellington at 2.02pm and the first train leaving Johnsonville at 2.30pm.

But at 1.30, there was a new problem for rail travellers. From 2pm, all services were cancelled between Wellington and Melling. Passengers wishing to travel to Western Hutt and Melling were told to catch Hutt Valley rail services to Petone. Buses will shuttle passengers between Petone to Western Hutt and Melling. Expect delays as these buses will not be running to timetable.

This afternoon MetLink released more information about its troubles and said there would be reduced services during peak time this afternoon:

The 6.28am service from Waikanae to Wellington experienced issues with the overhead power line and became entangled at Linden station at 7.22am. The service was stopped at Linden station and the line was closed between Wellington and Porirua to isolate and resolve the issue.

There was also damage to the overhead power lines near Wellington station which means platforms 1-3 are out of service. The overhead fault also damaged equipment on several other Matangi carriages, which have been removed from service for repairs. This means there are fewer trains available for this afternoon’s peak.


  1. Paul, 19. January 2018, 12:22

    Very poorly handled in terms of communication to passengers, response time and provision of transport options. Not good enough.

  2. Jonny Utzone, 19. January 2018, 21:45

    1) I wonder if the Matangis are still under guarantee?

    2) I wonder what they will be like when they are ten years old?

  3. Phil Tanner, 19. January 2018, 22:38

    Hey Metlink, after clipping my 10 trip ticket for both daughter and me this morning, and leaving us completely stranded at Paremata, taking another two clips for the delayed, crammed, slow train tonight is taking the piss. [via twitter]