Metrorail considers suspending Pienaarspoort service

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Pretoria - Metrorail has warned unruly commuters that it will suspend its services at the Pienaarspoort train station between Mamelodi and Pretoria if the violence on the route does not end.

"It must be noted that should the security outlook in this corridor remain serious and volatile, Metrorail will not hesitate to suspend its services as we cannot allow the safety of our commuters to be compromised," said Metrorail spokesperson, Sibusiso Ngomane, on Wednesday.

He said Metrorail could not guarantee services in an environment that continued to expose assets and staff to unabated criminal threats.

"The Pienaarspoort section, in particular, has witnessed an upswing in illegal and violent commuter actions," he added.

A Metrorail security guard was shot and a commuter was injured on a train on Tuesday night. A group of commuters became violent when a ticket official asked to see their train tickets.

"It was during the skirmish that a shot was fired. One of the commuters wounded a security guard and injured a commuter on board," said Ngomane earlier on Wednesday.

He confirmed that operations at the station resumed as scheduled this morning.

Ngomane said, however, they were monitoring the situation closely and conducting a risk assessment exercise to establish if it was feasible to continue operations.

He appealed to community leaders and stakeholders to take firm action against all criminal elements and to take necessary steps to ensure that incidents of this nature do not recur.

"As a contingency, we have deployed additional security personnel in partnership with the SAPS at the station to ensure that we are able to deal with any eventuality," he added.