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The $64M cost of Qld's rail fail revealed

The $64M cost of Qld's rail fail revealed .jpg

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk speaks during Question Time at Parliament House in Brisbane, Thursday, May 17, 2018. (AAP Image/Glenn Hunt)

Queensland train drivers have been paid more than $41 million in overtime since the start of cascading timetable failures in Queensland Rail in October 2016, according to figures released by the state opposition.

But the Labor government has played down the significance of the figure, saying there was no quick fix for the southeast's train network.

The Liberal National Party released answers to questions on notice on Tuesday which showed the millions in overtime payments, as well as nearly $23 million paid for taxis and buses to fill gaps in the timetable.

Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington used the figures to again call for Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk to sack Transport Minister Mark Bailey.

"Annastacia Palaszczuk now has 41 million reasons to sack this incompetent transport minister," Ms Frecklington told reporters.

Acting Premier Jackie Trad played down the issue, saying the overtime issue was made clear in the Strachan inquiry into the rostering failures handed down in January last year.

"We wouldn't have a blowout in overtime if the LNP hadn't sacked tutor-drivers and stopped recruiting new drivers back when they were in government," she told reporters on Tuesday.

"We have been left with a significant problem which will take a while to solve."

The government has committed to implementing all the recommendations of the Strachan Inquiry, including opening QR recruitment to external hires.

The Fair Work Commission last month rejected a bid from the Rail Tram and Bus Union to block external hires in favour of existing QR employees being retrained.

Mr Bailey on Monday said despite that, they had two years worth of trainee drivers in their driver schools, but admitted it would also take that long for QR's timetable to get back to the level it had been before the initial October 2016 event.

QR now runs a timetable with 470 fewer services than October 2016, when a lack of trained drivers resulted in no one being available to drive trains, with hundreds of services cancelled on a single day.

© AAP 2018