Train fire survivor Leigh, 42, is on the road to recovery at Tygerberg Hospital.
Cape Town - The brave mom who saved herself by jumping off a burning train is planning to take Metrorail to court for failing to secure the line.

Leigh Jansen, 42, from Southfield, was trapped on the carriage following a suspected arson attack which also claimed the life of another woman in May.

The incident happened between Ottery and Southfield stations on the Southern Line.

The mother of one managed to jump through a window and was found lying unconscious next to the train tracks by a passerby.

She fought for her life in hospital after sustaining severe burns to her upper body and face, and her lungs and throat were also damaged from the toxic smoke of burning plastic.

She was only taken off a ventilator only last week.

Her mother, Ursula Schenker, says she remains hopeful that her daughter will make a full recovery.

“Leigh is hanging in there. It is day 27 and she is still at Tygerberg Hospital. She needs more skin grafting and is in a good space mentally,” says Ursula.

Parents Melvyn van Horsten and Ursula Schenker with Leigh Jansen

“She is still in a lot of pain, which is normal for burn victims. It will be her son’s birthday on 28 June and it will be the first time that she will not be hands-on with the planning of his birthday party.”

Ursula says following the story in the Daily Voice about her daughter’s ordeal, officials from both Metrorail and the police came to see Leigh.

“SAPS have been to the hospital to take a statement from Leigh and I believe the deceased victim’s husband came forward after the article in the Daily Voice,” says Ursula.

“Metrofail also made contact on day 9. Subsequently, there has been another arson attack and though no injured passengers were reported it is really disheartening that the lines remain unprotected.”

A suspected arson attack on Metrorail's Cape Town southern line claimed the life of one woman and seriously injured another in May.

Police spokesperson, Lieutenant-Colonel André Traut, says: “The victim has been identified through DNA as a 35-year-old female. The circumstances of the matter are still under investigation.”

Ursula says they will be taking further steps against Metrorail.

“This is subject to a court case either way you look at it. Attempted murder and murder. They are in violation of Chapter 2 (12)(c) to be free from all forms of violence, as they violated her sense of security by failing to adequately secure their lines, which is totally unacceptable.

“It is not only about Leigh but a fight for all commuters that have been short-changed by Metrorail,” Ursula adds.

Metrorail did not respond to queries.

Daily Voice