Commuter killed at Mowbray station

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Cape Town - A train passenger was killed at Mowbray station on Friday morning and another train snagged its pantograph in the overhead wires, causing delays.

Details of the death were sketchy at the time of publication but Metrorail regional manager Mthuthuzeli Swartz offered his condolences to the deceased’s family.

The incident happened at about 8.30am at Mowbray station and the line was open by 9.50am, Swartz said.

Swartz confirmed a train was damaged by fire at Esplanade station on Thursday evening, purportedly by angry commuters who also stoned police and the fire brigade members. One MetroPlus motor coach and the adjoining carriage were damaged. No injuries were reported.

 “We understand commuter frustration; we have extensively communicated what we are doing to stabilise the service. To burn your only mode of transport is extremely shortsighted and ill-advised - it simply means tomorrow there will be fewer trains to convey people to work,” Swartz said.

“The first train of the morning departing from Fish Hoek snagged high-tension overhead wires between Clovelly and Kalk Bay.”

A bus service had been made available until the service was restored at 9.10am, he said.

Delays up to and hour were reported due to the incidents.

Swartz urged commuters to comply with safety regulations at all times to prevent tragedies.

Meanwhile, speed restrictions were still in force on the approaches to Bell-ville and Cape Town stations due to repair work on damaged rails, as reported by Swartz last week.

The state of Cape Town’s rail network has since drawn the attention of the Railway Safety Regulator, which on Thursday issued Metrorail in the Western Cape with an improvement directive regarding the poor condition of track infrastructure between Cape Town and Woodstock.

The regulator imposed a speed limit of 15km/h on all main lines into Cape Town station, with immediate effect.

This was until the infrastructure, in the vicinity of the Christiaan Barnard overpass, had been refurbished to its original design specifications.

Metrorail would also have to supply a “corrective action project plan” by April 18, which would show how Metrorail intends repairing the track infrastructure, the regulator said.

Cape Argus

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