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Transport News

N1 upgrades in Western Cape now 60% complete, completion targeted for May 2019

By: Marleny Arnoldi     28th September 2018 The R487-million upgrade of a section of the N1 between Plattekloof road and Old Oak interchange, in the Western Cape, is 60% complete. The project is expected to be completed by May 2019.  

Transnet head Gama given notice of termination, board confirms

By: News24Wire      28th September 2018 The Transnet Board has confirmed Transnet group chief executive Siyabonga Gama was given notice of termination, with ten days to justify why he should not be axed. In a statement, the Board said it had on Thursday served Gama with a letter explaining its decision, citing "serious violations" of... 

Transnet head Gama given notice of termination, board confirms
Photo by Dylan Slater
Siyabonga Gama

Air freight volumes see reduced growth, but yields remain good

By: Rebecca Campbell     28th September 2018 The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has reported, in its “Cargo Chartbook Q3 2018”, that the yearly increase in air freight ton/kilometres (FTKs) had decelerated to 2.8% during the three month period ending in July. This was “its slowest pace on this basis in more than two years,”... 

South African missile test programme concluded on a high note

By: Rebecca Campbell     28th September 2018 South African State-owned defence industrial group Denel has announced the successful completion of the guided missile qualification test series for the A-Darter infrared (IR) homing short range air-to-air missile system. The A-Darter is a fifth generation missile that uses an imaging IR seeker... 

Musings on the local aerospace and defence industries

By: Rebecca Campbell     28th September 2018 Last week saw the latest edition of Africa Aerospace and Defence, still the continent’s premier exhibition in this sector, attracting exhibitors and visitors from all over the world. And, naturally, drawing one’s thoughts to the state of the closely related but not identical aerospace and defence... 

Local strides to hydrogen economy tempered by cost, industrialisation questions

By: Schalk Burger     27th September 2018 The use of platinum group metals-based fuel cells in electricity and mobility applications is expected to provide ample commercial opportunities for South Africa, in line with worldwide trends to decarbonise electricity generation and transport. However, the high cost of these technologies,... 

Airports Company reports fall in its earnings but also in its debt

By: Rebecca Campbell     27th September 2018 The Airports Company South Africa (ACSA), one of the few South African State-owned companies that has been able to keep itself financially healthy, reported on Thursday that, despite declines in its revenues, profits, and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda), it... 

Airports Company reports fall in its earnings but also in its debt

Cameroonian rail firm Camrail convicted over 2016 deadly train crash

By: Reuters     27th September 2018 Cameroonian rail operator Camrail and eleven other defendants were found guilty of involuntary manslaughter on Wednesday in connection with a train derailment that killed 79 people and wounded over 600 in October 2016. The packed train operated by Camrail, a unit of French industrial group... 

Trafigura Group helps re-establish historic African trade route

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     26th September 2018 Independent commodity trading group Trafigura has successfully taken the first step towards reopening one of Africa’s most historic trade routes, with a train journey that ended in the Angolan port of Lobito on Saturday, September 22. A cargo of 800 t of copper blister, bought by Trafigura from... 

SAA states it is ahead of plan in terms of trading performance

By: Rebecca Campbell     26th September 2018 Embattled State-owned national carrier South African Airways affirmed in a press release on Wednesday that its turnaround strategy was “on track”. It reported that its results for the first quarter indicated that it was “ahead of the plan in its trading performance”. But the release did not give... 

E-toll summonses up nearly 20-fold in 3 years

By: News24Wire      26th September 2018 Summonses issued for e-toll nonpayments have increased nearly 20-fold over the past three years but collections are down, according to data supplied by the minister of transport to members of Parliament. Transport Minister Blade Nzimande gave details on the number of summonses issued by the South... 

 E-toll summonses up nearly 20-fold in 3 years

Fastjet flags dwindling cash resources, may end Tanzania operations

By: Reuters     26th September 2018 African airline Fastjet said on Wednesday its available cash resources were minimal and said it was in talks with major shareholders regarding potential equity fundraising. The company also said it was evaluating its Tanzanian operations and could cease operations in country. 

PRASA 'indefinitely' suspends trains in KZN

By: News24Wire      25th September 2018 There will be no trains in the entire province of KwaZulu-Natal on Tuesday, the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) confirmed to News24 on Monday evening. PRASA provincial spokesperson Zama Nomnganga said they have indefinitely suspended all their operations in KZN. "Yes, we have done... 

Selling off assets won't save SAA, says DA

By: African News Agency      24th September 2018 Reported plans to sell off certain assets will not save the South African Airways (SAA) and the airline needs to be put into business rescue, the Democratic Alliance said on Sunday. The DA was not surprised by media reports on Sunday that SAA was contemplating selling off assets as a result of... 

Air traffic control undergoing a digital revolution

By: Rebecca Campbell     21st September 2018 The dramatic advances in information and communications technology, electro-optical technologies and digitalisation have enabled a revolution to take place in terms of airport air (and ground) traffic control. This was highlighted in a briefing at the Africa Aerospace and Defence 2018 exhibition... 

Air traffic control undergoing a digital revolution
Photo by Dylan Slater
Saab VP: Civil Security Middle East and North Africa region David Schomar

Potential buyer ditches plan to acquire Bidcorp's UK logistics business

By: Reuters     21st September 2018 International food distributor Bid Corporation Ltd (Bidcorp) said on Friday the prospective buyer for its UK logistics business is no longer interested in buying it, citing internal reasons. In August the South African company said is was finalising an agreement to sell that business to an... 

Partnerships enable HighJump to bring new supply chain technology to Africa

By: Schalk Burger     21st September 2018 With the help of its partners, supply chain software company HighJump is bringing new logistics, freight and warehouse technologies into South Africa and Africa. These technologies include the use of voice commands, which will be important to interact with automated systems and robots that are a... 

Sanral awards R1.65bn Msikaba megabridge contract to Concor Mota-Engil JV

By: Marleny Arnoldi     20th September 2018 The South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) has awarded the Concor Mota-Engil joint venture (JV) the second of two megabridge construction contracts as part of the N2 Wild Coast project. The R1.65-billion bridge will be built near Lusikisiki over the Msikaba gorge.  

Sanral awards R1.65bn Msikaba megabridge contract to Concor Mota-Engil JV
Artist impression of Msikaba bridge

Ngqura Port celebrates milestone

By: Simone Liedtke     19th September 2018 The developing Port of Ngqura, owned by Transnet National Ports Authority, celebrated a milestone this week, with the arrival of the first vessel discharging cargo for Osho Cement. Osho Cement is a new cement manufacturer currently under construction in the Coega Special Economic Zone (SEZ), in... 

Ngqura Port celebrates milestone

Sanral completes road improvements on R510

By: Marleny Arnoldi     19th September 2018 The South African National Road Agency Limited (Sanral) has completed repairs to and the resealing of the 61-km-long R510, which runs from Rustenburg, in the North West, to the Limpopo border. “The road is now much more comfortable for drivers and safer for pedestrians. It has brought some... 

Pretoria high court dismisses Transnet director's challenge to dismissal

By: African News Agency      19th September 2018 The Pretoria High court on Tuesday dismissed former Transnet director Seth Radebe's challenge to have his removal by Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan set aside. Gordhan said in a statement he welcomed the ruling, adding that Rabebe's approach to the court had been "vexacious". 

Cable theft puts brakes on Pretoria-Joburg Metrorail trains

By: African News Agency      19th September 2018 Metrorail said on Wednesday that its train service running between Pretoria and Johannesburg was disrupted due to overhead catenary wires being cut and stolen at Irene from both the up and down lines.  Goodman Matampi, acting provincial manager of Gauteng Metrorail, said trains to and from... 

Comair hikes FY18 earnings despite soaring fuel costs

By: African News Agency      18th September 2018 South African aviation group Comair Limited on Tuesday announced record earnings with a R326 million profit after tax for the year ended 30 June 2018, which was up R29-million to the prior year, despite dismal trading conditions. Comair said that difficult trading conditions included poor GDP... 

TNPA appoints Seroka business development officer

By: Marleny Arnoldi     18th September 2018 Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) has appointed Linda Seroka business development officer, effective September 18. Seroka’s role will be to explore and unlock growth opportunities for TNPA and its clients in the fields of commercial and marketing, strategy, property and facilities... 

TNPA appoints Seroka business development officer
TNPA business development officer Linda Seroka

South African A-Darter guided missile test programme successfully concluded

By: Rebecca Campbell     18th September 2018 South African State-owned defence industrial group Denel announced on Monday the successful completion of the guided missile qualification test series for the A-Darter infrared (IR) homing short range air-to-air missile system. The A-Darter is a fifth generation missile that uses an imaging IR... 

South African A-Darter guided missile test programme successfully concluded
Photo by Denel
An A-Darter missile on a wingtip launcher of a Gripen fighter

ELB, Elwatini partner to provide rail solutions

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     18th September 2018 ELB Engineering Services and Elwatini Rail Consultants have formed a special purpose vehicle (SPV), ELB-Elwatini Rail Solutions, to provide services in rail feasibility studies, railway planning, railway engineering design, construction supervision and management, civil design, traction power and... 

World’s first hydrogen fuel cell train enters commercial service

By: Simone Liedtke     17th September 2018 The world’s first hydrogen fuel cell train, the Coradia iLint, made its debut this past weekend. The train is equipped with fuel cells that convert hydrogen and oxygen into electricity, thereby eliminating pollutant emissions related to propulsion. 

World’s first hydrogen fuel cell train enters commercial service

New road paves way into one of the biggest industrial estates in South Africa  

By: Marleny Arnoldi     17th September 2018 JSE-listed real estate investment trust Redefine Properties, together with Abland Property Developers, on Monday unveiled the completed new public road that will improve accessibility to the S&J industrial estate, situated along the N3 highway, south of Germiston, in Gauteng. The construction of... 

New road paves way into one of the biggest industrial estates in South Africa
S&J industrial estate, in Germiston Gauteng

Saldanha port’s iron-ore facility to shut for maintenance from Sept 26

By: Marleny Arnoldi     17th September 2018 Transnet Port Terminal’s (TPT’s) Saldanha iron-ore plant will shut down from September 26, as part of its yearly maintenance plan across mechanical, electrical and structural works. TPT Cape Channel GM Velile Dube states that maintenance is a critical necessity at this stage, since the facility... 

Top trends that are likely to change the way we work and live

By: Kim Cloete     14th September 2018 Quantum computing and flying cars are two of the top trends that Frost & Sullivan has outlined within its top trends for 2018/19 at its CEO Think Tank in Cape Town.  The company has looked at trends that are changing the way we work and live. 

Bombardier Transportation’s electric train makes its public debut

By: Irma Venter     14th September 2018 Bombardier Transportation’s new battery-operated train, the  Bombardier Talent 3 electro-hybrid train, was introduced to the German public this week. “We want to continue to electrify rail transport. A train that can charge its batteries from the overhead line while driving is a huge step toward... 

Bombardier Transportation’s electric train makes its public debut

First Xeno 1 laser installation complete

By: Jessica Oosthuizen     14th September 2018 Product identification equipment manufacturer Cab Technology South Africa has completed the installation of a Xeno 1 laser marking system at cable and connector solutions supplier Hiconnex Industrial’s new facility, in Centurion, in Gauteng, says Cab Technology South Africa technical sales... 

First Xeno 1 laser  installation complete
XENO 1 LASER SYSTEM The Xeno 1 is a desktop system that meets all the requirements for a cyber-physical system

Glider reaches unprecedented altitudes in experimental programme

By: Rebecca Campbell     14th September 2018 In just eight days during late August and early September, Airbus’ Perlan 2 glider set three new world altitude records for a glider. Moreover, during the third of these flights, it reached an altitude that has been exceeded in level flight by only two other types of aircraft. These flights were... 

PRASA commits to paying R16m for special Rail Enforcement Unit

By: News24Wire      13th September 2018 The Passenger Rail Agency of SA (PRASA) says it is fully committed to its part in the establishment of a special Rail Enforcement Unit, pledging to pay its R16-million contribution towards the deployment of an additional 100 officers. The rail agency's contribution, which it reaffirmed at a... 

South Africa's iron-ore railway to be shut down for annual maintenance

By: Reuters     12th September 2018 The main railway line along South Africa's iron-ore corridor will be shut down for annual maintenance from September 26 to October 2, State-owned freight logistics firm Transnet said on Wednesday. The railway line that stretches up to 861 km (534 miles) from iron-ore mines at Sishen in the... 

Traxtion, Railway Material Resources form JV to distribute rail parts into Africa

By: Marleny Arnoldi     12th September 2018 Private locomotive and rail operator Traxtion Sheltam and Austria-based rail services company Railway Material and Resources (RMR) have signed an agreement to create a joint venture (JV) called RMR Africa, that will distribute rail parts across the African continent. The JV brings together two... 

Failure not an option at DCT berth deepening project, says TNPA

By: Shirley le Guern     11th September 2018 Transnet’s R7-billion megaproject to create deeper berths at the Durban Container Terminal (DCT) Pier 2’s North Quay will create some disruption and require close collaboration. However, given that this is the first project to be funded by the Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa's New... 

Failure not an option at DCT berth deepening project, says TNPA

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