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Uber is accused of price gouging desperate Sydney residents as fares surge while trains go into meltdown over ‘communication issues’

  • Trains in Sydney stopped on Wednesday 
  • Uber prices shot up at the same time 

Commuters in Sydney faced a transport crisis with Uber prices surging as trains around the city came to a standstill.

The entire Sydney trains network came to a complete stop during the afternoon rush on Wednesday.

When trains are down, Sydneysiders often opt to catch an Uber home but unexpected price rises saw many decide to wait out the train crisis or catch a bus.

Customers said Ubers were charging up to $90 for trips across the city.

One commuter posted a screenshot of a trip from the middle of the city to Bondi that was charging $88.21.

Trains around Sydney came to a complete standstill during the afternoon rush on Wednesday (pictured, commuters piling onto alternative light rail services on Wednesday)

Trains around Sydney came to a complete standstill during the afternoon rush on Wednesday (pictured, commuters piling onto alternative light rail services on Wednesday)

Sydney commuters were left waiting in stations for the trains to start running again after Ubers jumped in price (pictured, Town Hall station on Wednesday afternoon)

Sydney commuters were left waiting in stations for the trains to start running again after Ubers jumped in price (pictured, Town Hall station on Wednesday afternoon)

Another said her usual $20 Uber trip home was going to cost an astounding $216. 

A third frustrated commuter shared a photo of an Uber booking from the CBD to Marrickville that was going to cost up to $77.17. 

However, Uber told Daily Mail Australia it took a ‘proactive’ approach to the shutdown and urged its drivers to go online and help commuters.

It said it also placed a cap on price surges early in the afternoon to prevent fees from getting out of hand.

The unexpected prices saw thousands of commuters stay at their stations or cram into small bus and light rail alternatives. 

The chaos started at about 2.45pm when the computer screens at Central Station, in the city’s CBD, went completely blank instead of showing when the next scheduled trains would arrive.

There was similar trouble at Wynyard Station where travellers were turned away from the train gates. 

Sydney Trains shared a warning to customers on Twitter at 3.50pm, saying: ‘Trains are not running due a train communication issue affecting the whole network.

‘Please use alternate travel options where possible. We expect this to continue into afternoon peak services, updates to follow.’

The system has since been rebooted and trains have started running again, more than an hour after the outage began. 

At about 2.45pm the computer screens at train stations around Sydney went blank (above)

At about 2.45pm the computer screens at train stations around Sydney went blank (above)

Opposition Transport Minister Jo Haylen blamed the Perrottet Government for Wednesday's train outage (pictured, commuters in the CBD)

Opposition Transport Minister Jo Haylen blamed the Perrottet Government for Wednesday’s train outage (pictured, commuters in the CBD)

The NSW Shadow Transport Minister, Jo Haylen, blamed the Perrottet Government for the incident. 

‘The Liberal government’s neglect of our existing train network has left old infrastructure that breaks down too often, and when it does, the entire network is disrupted leaving tens of thousands of passengers stranded,’ she said in a statement.

‘Our existing rail network needs investment. It needs new rolling stock and new infrastructure. Instead the Liberals have neglected it and ran it down.

‘Labor will invest in our train network so it gets passengers from A to B. The Liberals have neglected it and there’s a real risk that they would privatise it.’

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