Cape Town - Metrorail has linked the fire on a train at Woodstock station this week to an earlier incident involving a defaulting passenger at Athlone station.

Four carriages were gutted as a train pulled into Woodstock station on Tuesday. Four people were hospitalised due to smoke inhalation.

Metrorail regional manager Mthuthuzeli Swartz said the incident in Woodstock was linked to an earlier incident involving a ticket defaulter at Athlone station.

Metrorail and the police would arrest those responsible for setting the train alight.

“We are going to push for harsher sentences. The charge should be attempted murder as customers were placed in danger by such stupidity,” Swartz said.

The fallout from the Woodstock fire and cable theft led to trains running late on Wednesday.

Trains on the central line ran 40 minutes late due to cable theft between Mandalay and Stock Road stations.

Metrorail said a preliminary investigation had revealed that arson was the cause of the fire.

In a statement on Wednesday Metrorail warned strikers against setting trains alight.

This after an engine and a carriage were gutted by fire at Croesus station in Johannesburg on Monday.

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Cape Argus