QR yard workers rort overtime, fake work trips
A COVER-up culture - including allegations of fudged timesheets, fake work trips and drug use - has been exposed within a major Queensland Rail depot.
In the latest scandal to hit the embattled Government-owned organisation, The Courier-Mail can reveal that the "toxic" culture within Bowen Hills depot E Block became so bad the allegations of mismanagement made their way to the state's Crime and Corruption Commission.
The startling allegations include incorrect timesheets, with a whistleblower claiming employees were recording 12-hour shifts, despite working only two hours at a time when wages bills at QR blew out by nearly $90 million last year.
A supervisor was found to be authorising incorrect time sheets at Bowen Hills last year, Queensland Rail chief executive Nick Easy has confirmed.
He also confirmed that three Mayne Yard employees at Bowen Hills had been sacked for drug use in the past 12 months.
"Queensland Rail notified the CCC, which advised Queensland Rail to manage the issue in accordance with its own disciplinary processes," Mr Easy said.
"Lead supervisors in this division are continuing to routinely monitor employee timesheets, following this matter.
"Within Mayne Yard as a whole, three employees were recorded as providing a positive AOD test in the past 12 months and have since had their employment terminated."
But a staff member, who wished to remain anonymous for fear of losing their job, says nothing has changed and the problem continues from the top down. According to the staff member, employees almost always record working 12 hours on weekends, despite only actually working two hours.
The source said a core group of employees - who are friendly with management - have also booked accommodation in different towns so they can claim the company's travel allowance, but they never actually attend the accommodation, or even leave Brisbane.
Rampant marijuana use among train drivers was also reported.
"There's a lot of s--- going on here that's been going on for a long time and these blokes are just getting away with it all the time, laughing about it all the time," the whistleblower said.
"There's a lot of money at stake here - a lot of money - and there are unsafe practices going on."
The Crime and Corruption Commission was asked if it had received a further complaint about the behaviour at the Bowen Hills depot earlier this year, but it did not respond before deadline.
Transport Minister Mark Bailey's office declined to comment.