Metrorail woes continue as another train catches fire at Cape Town station

2019-05-29 17:37
The Cape Town train station after an electrical fire on Wednesay. (Kamva Somdyala, News24)

The Cape Town train station after an electrical fire on Wednesay. (Kamva Somdyala, News24)

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As Metrorail reopened platforms after a fire on Tuesday evening, yet another train caught fire at the Cape Town station on Wednesday afternoon.

An electrical fault was to blame for the latest fire, according to Metrorail.

"An overhead electrical wire caused an electrical surge, resulting in an explosion of the high tension equipment atop a motor coach," said Metrorail spokesperson Riana Scott.

Scott confirmed that the train was an empty set stationed at Platform 16 and was scheduled to be moved to the maintenance depot.

No injuries have been reported, but trains moving between Cape Town station and Salt River were temporarily suspended "until further notice", according to announcements at the station.

Commuters were advised to make use of alternative transport.

Platforms 15 and 16 were closed for clean-up operations.

Platforms reopened

Platforms 5 and 6 were reopened on Wednesday afternoon after a fire on Tuesday evening gutted two carriages and damaged a third.

Scott said the platforms were cleared and tested safe for operations. Scott said trains would be dispatched from the platforms from 13:00.

A call for help is believed to have been sounded at around 19:40 on Tuesday regarding a fire on Platform 6. Three fire fighting vehicles and a rescue vehicle were dispatched and the fire was contained shortly after 21:00.

"A full investigation is underway into the incident. The damaged carriages have been removed for forensic tests and damage appraisal by loss adjusters. The exact replacement costs will only be confirmed after their assessment but historical similar losses have amounted to +- R3m," said Scott.

Metrorail has been battling significant losses as a result of fires and vandalism. On Easter Sunday a massive fire engulfed several coaches. A man was arrested.

Read more on:    metrorail  |  cape town  |  fires
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