STATE Labor has hit out at the NSW government for going ahead with track work on the Hunter's train lines while pushing a major regional tourism campaign.
The opposition's tourism spokeswoman, Maitland MP Jenny Aitchison, said tourism operators had missed out "on months of income due to fires and COVID-19" and having the Central Coast-Newcastle line as well as the Hunter line closed would be a blow to the industry.
"With easing restrictions and a new NSW tourism campaign, this could be the first big weekend in months for tourism operators around the state," she said.
"However, track work will put pressure on transport services around the [region]."
Labor's transport spokesman and Central Coast MP David Harris called for extra buses, not just replacement services.
"Transport users who visit our regions need to be confident they won't be stranded or delayed," he said.
Sydney Trains said track work was planned 18 months in advance and was essential to operating a safe network.
"An additional 20 buses will be operating per day compared to the trackwork replacement services that ran over the Queen's Birthday long weekend in 2019, despite a 69 per cent drop in weekend patronage compared to last year," a Sydney Trains spokesman said.
"The trackwork being undertaken this weekend is critical maintenance works to ensure the safe and reliable operation of the network.
"To minimise the impact on customers, including essential workers, who rely on trains to travel, track possessions occur overnight and on weekends when rail patronage is lowest."
Buses replace trains between Wickham and Central, and Scone/Dungog across the long weekend.