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Rail News

Grindrod reports strong recovery in interim earnings

By: Marleny Arnoldi     31st August 2018 Freight and financial services group Grindrod has achieved a strong year-on-year recovery in the six months to June 30, with its earnings a share having increased to 317c, compared with a loss a share of 11.5c in the first half of 2017. Headline earnings a share were 3.8c, compared with a... 

Spotlight on CTC and potential legal inconsistencies

By: Jessica Oosthuizen     31st August 2018 The Cape Town Convention (CTC) on International Interests in Mobile Equipment is receiving a lot of attention from the legal industry in terms of how South Africa has incorporated it and how certain remedies provided for therein are enforced in the aviation industry, says global law firm Norton... 

Spotlight on CTC and potential legal inconsistencies
COMPLIANCY CHECK An aviation working group is evaluating whether South Africa implements and complies with the rights and remedies provided for in the Cape Town Convention

Untu warns against PRASA’s continued safety noncompliance

By: Marleny Arnoldi     28th August 2018 The United National Transport Union (Untu) believes government and Transport Minister Blade Nzimande can be held accountable for any injuries incurred by employees or commuters of the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA), owing to “blatant disregard” for basic safety procedures set down... 

Transnet results eclipsed by irregular expenditure, qualified audit and State capture

By: Terence Creamer     20th August 2018 A surge in irregular expenditure to over R8-billion triggered a qualification of Transnet’s 2018 financial results, all but eclipsing an otherwise strong financial and operational performance by the State-owned group. The irregular expenditure related primarily to procurement undertaken by... 

Transnet results eclipsed by irregular expenditure, qualified audit and State capture

State capture inquiry gets underway in Johannesburg

By: African News Agency      20th August 2018 The judicial commission of inquiry into alleged capture of the South African State and its entities, referred to as ''State capture'', is set to begin on Monday in Johannesburg. At the centre of the hearings are the fugitive Gupta family, who have since left the country as allegations of... 

State capture inquiry gets underway in Johannesburg
Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo

Get your house in order, MPs tell Transnet

By: Reuters     17th August 2018 Parliament's watchdog on public account on Friday said it had instructed the Transnet board and management to curb graft at the State-owned company. "The Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) has told the Transnet Board and management to stop the looting because the business is able to... 

Hawks investigate cases related to Gupta-loot worth more than R40bn

By: News24Wire      16th August 2018 The Hawks are investigating cases related to the Guptas' state capture project that involves more than R40 billion which has been plundered from state coffers. Lieutenant General Godfrey Lebeya presented the Hawks' progress in several cases of state capture to the Portfolio Committee on Police on... 

Transnet signals intention to suspend CEO Gama

By: African News Agency      16th August 2018 The Transnet board has served notice on CEO Siyabonga Gama and two other top senior officials that it intends to place them on precautionary suspension. Chief procurement officer Thamsanqa Jiyana and supply chain manager Lindiwe Mdletshe also received letters on Wednesday. 

Transnet signals intention to suspend CEO Gama
Photo by Creamer Media
Transnet CEO Siyabonga Gama

Gordhan announces whistleblower hotline to boost fight against corruption

By: News24Wire      15th August 2018 Stabilising State-owned enterprises could take six months or longer, depending on the extent of corruption, said Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan. The minister on Wednesday briefed the portfolio committee on public enterprises on the progress made in addressing governance challenges at... 

Gordhan announces whistleblower hotline to boost fight against corruption
Photo by Dylan Slater
Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan

Cable theft disrupts Metrorail's Joburg-Pretoria train service

By: Reuters     15th August 2018 Metrorail has said its technical teams are busy replacing stolen cables after its train service between Pretoria and Johannesburg was disrupted on Wednesday morning due to missing overhead wires on both lines at Olifantsfontein. As a result, trains from Johannesburg are turning around at... 

Kenya charges top officials with fraud over new $3bn railway

By: Reuters     13th August 2018 A Kenyan court on Monday charged the heads of the agency that manages public land and of the state railway with fraud over land allocation for a new $3-billion train line linking the capital with East Africa's biggest port. The line between Nairobi and Mombasa, funded by China, is one of the... 

Gautrain strike over after workers accept 8% wage offer

By: African News Agency      13th August 2018 A two-week strike by Gautrain workers ended on Monday after workers accepted an offer by the Bombela Concession Company, operator of the high speed commuter rail system, of a one-year wage offer of eight% salary increments for about 90% of employees. Gautrain workers downed tools on July 30,... 

R100 000 reward offered for info on Cape Town train fires

By: News24Wire      6th August 2018 The Western Cape government is offering a R100 000 reward for information that could lead to the arrest and conviction of whoever is burning trains in Cape Town. "The R100 000 reward we are making available is our warning to these arsonists: You are being watched, you will be caught and we will... 

UNTU says accepts CCMA’s offer to help resolve Gautrain wage dispute

By: Marleny Arnoldi     3rd August 2018 The United National Transport Union (UNTU) has accepted the invitation of the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) to try and resolve the Gautrain strike that entered its fifth day on Friday. Subsequently, Gautrain has also accepted the invitation, as it is concerned... 

UNTU says accepts CCMA’s offer to help resolve Gautrain wage dispute

Rail company supports community development

3rd August 2018 Train manufacturer Gibela launched its Make a Difference campaign, which recognises the importance of educational support at all levels in the communities neighbouring its Dunnottar factory, in Gauteng, in May. The company launched the campaign at an event at Mom Sebone Secondary School in... 

Rail company supports community development
Photo by Creamer Media
ON FLEET The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa assigned Gibela the task of replacing its ageing metro fleet with a modern service

Rail infrastructure in state of neglect

By: Jessica Oosthuizen     3rd August 2018 South Africa’s railway infrastructure is in a state of neglect, says rail consultancy and rolling stock supplier African Railway Systems technical manager Dylan Knott. “Rail has been in decline for the past three decades, and with it, almost all the once thriving branch lines have closed. The... 

Rail infrastructure in state of neglect
Photo by Creamer Media
BAD CONDITION Without direct investment in infrastructure, locomotives, rolling stock or skills, the future of the South African rail industry does not look positive

Road-rail vehicle innovator introduces RailBus

By: Jessica Oosthuizen     3rd August 2018 Olifantsfontein-based road-rail vehicle (RRV) manufacturer RailPro has developed a bimodal vehicle that transports people and goods on road and rail, says MD Ed Magan. The vehicle, called RailBus, was launched in June. 

Road-rail vehicle innovator introduces RailBus
Photo by Bloomberg
FACILITATING MOBILITY Thousands of rural dwellers are situated close to existing rail lines and the RailBus will allow for exploitation of underused rail routes

PRASA issued a temporary safety permit

By: African News Agency      2nd August 2018 The Railway Safety Regulator (RSR) on Thursday said it has issued the Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) with a temporary safety permit. RSR spokesperson Madelein Williams said the temporary safety permit would be valid from August 2 to 31. 

Etion lobbies for independent maintenance house for railways

By: Irma Venter     1st August 2018 The JSE-listed Etion is lobbying for the formation of an independent information and maintenance house, which will manage the maintenance and information of the condition monitoring systems at most of South Africa’s freight rail operations. These systems, which serve to keep trains on the track... 

Etion lobbies for independent maintenance house for railways
Bennie Steyn

RSR says it won’t issue PRASA with safety permit

By: Anine Kilian     1st August 2018 The Railway Safety Regulator (RSR) on Wednesday said the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) was operating trains without a valid safety permit. PRASA’s safety permit, which was previously issued with special conditions, expired at midnight on July 31, and the RSR has taken the decision... 

Saboteurs behind train torching 'pretend to be commuters' – Cape Town transport head

By: News24Wire      30th July 2018 Alleged saboteurs believed to be behind the recent spate of train torchings all used the same method: they pretended to be commuters before setting the carriage alight as the train arrived in the station. This is according to mayoral committee member for transport and urban development Brett... 

Bombela sets Gautrain contingency plan in motion as strike goes ahead

By: Simone Liedtke     30th July 2018 Wage negotiations between Gautrain operator Bombela Operating Company (BOC) and trade union, the United National Transport Union (UNTU) have reached a deadlock and, owing to this, UNTU-affiliated workers have embarked on a “no work, no pay” strike from Monday. BOC offered an 8.5% increase in... 

Bombela sets Gautrain contingency plan in motion as strike goes ahead

PRASA hunting down 'enemies' responsible for Cape Town train attacks

By: News24Wire      30th July 2018 All stops are being pulled out to find those responsible for three arson attacks on trains in Cape Town this month, the Passenger Rail Agency of SA (PRASA) board said on Sunday. "It is clear to us that this is the work of people who have placed themselves as enemies of PRASA, enemies of our... 

PRASA hunting down 'enemies' responsible for Cape Town train attacks

UNTU, Bombela to continue weekend talks to avoid planned Gautrain strike

By: Simone Liedtke     27th July 2018 Following the meeting held on Thursday between Gautrain operator Bombela Operating Company (BOC) and trade union, the United National Transport Union, negotiations to find a settlement in the current wage dispute have resumed on Friday and will continue over the course of the weekend. If no... 

UNTU, Bombela to continue weekend talks to avoid planned Gautrain strike

TFR to spend R90m on yearly manganese line shutdown

By: Creamer Media Reporter      26th July 2018 Transnet Freight Rail (TFR) is set to spend about R90-million on its yearly, large-scale maintenance shutdown on the manganese rail line from August 2 to 8.  The railway line, which spans across three provinces – the Eastern Cape, the Northern Cape and the Free State – will be undergoing... 

Another Metrorail train on fire in Cape Town, bringing the number of incidents to five

By: News24Wire      26th July 2018 Yet another Metrorail train was in flames in Cape Town on Thursday - this time in Retreat. It is the fifth such incident in Cape Town this year. "Yes, we have confirmation that it is in Retreat," Metrorail spokesperson Riana Scott said. Scott was still waiting for further details. Fire... 

Gautrain operator requests meeting with union to avoid planned strike

By: Simone Liedtke     25th July 2018 Gautrain-operator Bombela Operating Company (BOC) on Wednesday told Engineering News Online that it remains open to further wage negotiations with trade union, the United National Transport Union (UNTU), after its wage offer was rejected. BOC has requested a meeting with UNTU on July 26. 

Transnet signs manganese capacity allocation contract with Assmang

By: Anine Kilian     25th July 2018 State-owned Transnet has signed a seven-and-a-half-year Manganese Export Capacity Allocation (MECA2) contract with Assmang as part of its strategy to secure 95% of manganese volumes on rail. The contract, which will see the transportation of export manganese from pit to port, offers Assmang, the... 

Cape Town train fire platform repairs completed – Metrorail

By: News24Wire      25th July 2018 Repairs to the two platforms at Cape Town station damaged during a fire last week were completed on Tuesday. In a statement, Metrorail said Platforms 15 and 16 were back in business after repairs had been completed and structural engineers confirmed that the integrity of the overhead concrete... 

Brics bank approves $600m loans for South African, Chinese projects

By: Reuters     24th July 2018 The New Development Bank, set up by the Brics group of emerging economies, has approved loans of $300-million for energy projects in South Africa and $300-million for a transportation project in China. South Africa, which will host a Brics summit later this week in Johannesburg, is trying to... 

R30m damage caused by Cape Town train fire

By: News24Wire      23rd July 2018 Officials are trying to establish the cause of a fire at Cape Town station that destroyed a number of train units – leaving an estimated R30-million cost of repair, PRASA said on Sunday. "While the reasons behind the fire are still sketchy, it is reported that one train arrived at the station, at... 

Transnet expansion project uplifts the community

20th July 2018 State-owned freight rail company Transnet’s R2.38-billion Manganese Rail Phase 1 Expansion project created about 2 200 employment opportunities in the remote Northern Cape region and provided skills development and training to local staff. 

Transnet expansion project  uplifts the community
BENEFICIARIES Women to Women Shelter is one of the community organisations that benefited from the project

Light rail line in Nigeria's capital opens to passengers

By: Reuters     19th July 2018 Nigeria has opened a new Chinese-built light railway network in the capital Abuja after 11 years of construction, a rare transport project in a nation where economic growth has been stymied for generations by a lack of infrastructure development. Passengers were permitted this week to ride the... 

Transforming public transport hubs key to better city living, says US professor

By: Irma Venter     17th July 2018 Creating transit-oriented developments (TODs) is one way to build a more sustainable city with lower car use and higher density, says University of California, Berkeley, city and regional planning professor emeritus Robert Cervero. TODs refer to public transport hubs evolving into a “place to... 

 Transforming public transport hubs key to better city living, says US professor

Gauteng Transport Authority set for rollout in Q1 2019

By: Irma Venter     11th July 2018 Gauteng’s three metros, and all other providers of public transport in the province, will be able to retain their various services’ individualised branding under the new Gauteng Transport Authority (GTA), says Gautrain Management Agency CEO Jack van der Merwe. This means that a system such as the... 

Gauteng Transport Authority set for rollout in Q1 2019
GMA CEO Jack van der Merwe

Transnet to operate inland manganese terminal

By: Marleny Arnoldi     10th July 2018 State-owned freight utility Transnet’s Port Terminals operating division has taken over operations at an inland terminal for the loading and handling of manganese at Lohatlha, in the Northern Cape.  

Alstom, Lagos government to collaborate on first two Blue Line metro phases

By: Marleny Arnoldi     5th July 2018 French multinational Alstom has signed a heads of agreement with the Lagos state government, which is represented by the Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (Lamata), for both Phase 1 and Phase 2 of the Lagos Blue Line metro, in Nigeria.  

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