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Durban - Heads are expected to roll in the coming weeks as Metrorail investigates the cause of a Durban train accident that injured 10 commuters and two others.
While Metrorail spokeswoman Isabel van der Westhuizen was quick to dismiss claims that the accident was a result of negligence, a high-ranking official said those responsible would have to answer for their negligence.
The official, who was speaking from the Berea Road station scene, said a trail dispatcher from the centralised traffic control was supposed to be monitoring the track occupancy and other conditions that could cause a collision.
“Track occupancy allows multiple trains operating in opposing and different directions to use a single track.
“The train dispatcher was supposed to be monitoring this movement but they obviously failed to do so, which is how we ended up with two trains on one track,” said the official.
“Heads are going to roll once the investigation is complete. Whoever was in charge can be grateful that there were no fatalities.”
The 12 people injured were taken to city hospitals on Friday after the two trains collided at about 9am, said Netcare 911 spokesman Chris Botha.
The injured included the drivers of the trains, said Van der Westhuizen.
The trains were travelling in opposite directions around a bend when the front of one crashed into the side of the other train. Botha said one passenger was critically injured while others suffered moderate injuries.
A witness described how he heard a loud bang, before hearing frightened commuters screaming for help.
“Most of the commuters managed to run out, but the driver of one train was stuck inside for some time before the emergency workers came to his rescue,” said Muzovukile Mkhabela.
Van der Westhuizen said the investigation could take up to six weeks.
Independent on Saturday