Rail services resume in Durban after floods

Wednesday, June 1, 2022

The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) has announced the resumption of services between Durban and Merebank after the service was suspended due to the impact of the floods that damaged rail infrastructure.

A limited service using diesel traction was reintroduced on Wednesday morning.

Meanwhile, final preparations are underway to restore services between Dalbridge and Tongaat, and KwaMashu and Dalbridge.

“The recovery of these lines forms part of our efforts to recover more services that were suspended either due to vandalism and theft or the floods that hit KwaZulu-Natal recently.

“The lines on the North-coast corridor, owned and maintained by Transnet, have been rehabilitated and restored by Transnet for the reintroduction of services,” PRASA said.

The work done to recover services includes repairing and installation of rail infrastructure, and the removal of rubble following the floods.

PRASA said the resumption of services will be a huge relief to commuters who rely on the cost-effective services.

“Metrorail is one of the most affordable and convenient modes of transport. The recovery of these lines supports PRASA’s recovery programme and strategy of rebuilding the rail network corridor by corridor,” PRASA said.

PRASA security is on high alert following threats of criminality and violence on some sections of the Northern Corridor.

“In the past three months, our signaling cables, over-head track equipment (OHTE) and rail assets have been under constant attack by criminals. Just recently, about R3.5millions worth of station assets had been stolen and vandalised, and some of our peace officers attacked,” PRASA said.

To date, several raids have been conducted with law enforcement agencies at nearby informal settlements.

Nineteen suspects have been arrested and are facing prosecution.

“Repairing and restoring the infrastructure comes at a huge cost to PRASA, hence additional security to protect the infrastructure will be deployed once the work has been completed.

“Measures have been put in place to mitigate further attacks on the rail infrastructure on that section of the network,” PRASA said.

The agency has appealed with communities to report any suspicious activity on the rail network. – SAnews.gov.za