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Rail News

Alstom to acquire 51% of Gauteng-based train refurbishing specialist

By: Irma Venter     15th January 2016 Rail group Alstom has signed an agreement to purchase 51% of South African rail company Commuter Transport & Locomotive Engineering (CTLE), for an undisclosed amount. CTLE, specialising in the modernisation of trains, was previously known as Union Carriage and Wagon (UCW). 

Site work begins on R1bn Gauteng train manufacturing plant

By: Terence Creamer     14th January 2016 Site clearing and earthworks for the R1-billion Dunnottar train manufacturing facility, in Ekurhuleni, which is being developed by the Alstom-led Gibela consortium, is set to begin, following the award of a contract to Trencon Construction, of Edenvale. The site is being leased from the... 

Site work begins on R1bn Gauteng train manufacturing plant

Alstom secures €6.3bn of orders in nine months to Dec

By: Natalie Greve     14th January 2016 French rail multinational Alstom secured €2.34-billion worth of orders in the quarter ended December 31, 2015, compared with the €1.61-billion of orders secured in the three months to December 2014. Major commercial successes for the quarter under review included the provision of regional trains... 

Alstom secures €6.3bn of orders in nine months to Dec

Gautrain starts process to acquire 12 new trains 

By: Irma Venter     8th January 2016 Gautrain has started the process of acquiring 12 new trains of four cars each. Bombela Concession Company, the operator of the Gautrain system, has launched a request for qualification (RFQ) for the new rolling stock.  

Gautrain starts process to acquire 12 new trains

First Metrorail test train arrives in S Africa 

By: Natalie Greve     18th December 2015 Some 18 months after the financial close of a passenger train supply contract between the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) and Alstom subsidiary Gibela, the State-owned firm has welcomed the arrival of the first test train aimed at replacing the old Metrorail train fleet over the... 

First Metrorail test train arrives in S Africa

Eskom coal line due for December 2017 completion 

By: Nadine James     11th December 2015 State-owned power utility Eskom’s Majuba rail project has had to deal with several challenges since it commenced in 2013. Subsequently, Eskom has revised the project’s completion date to December 2017, says Majuba rail project communications and stakeholder management head Khululiwe Xulu. The... 

Eskom coal line due for December 2017 completion
Photo by Duane Daws
MAJUBA POWER STATION Eskom's privater coal line will transport 21-million tonnes of coal to the Majuba power station

Gauteng Premier welcomes launch of Mamelodi transport hub

By: Nadine James     11th December 2015 Gauteng premier David Makhura and Tshwane mayor Kgosientso Ramokgopa launched the first phase of the R850-million Denneboom Station Public Transport Interchange (DSPTI) project in Mamelodi last month, calling on residents to support the project. The project forms part of the Solomon Mahlangu... 

Gauteng Premier  welcomes launch of Mamelodi transport hub
TSHWANE REGIONAL MALL An artist's impression of what the Mamelodi mall will look like when it opens in April 2017

Gautrain expansion feasibility study to be completed by March 

By: Schalk Burger     11th December 2015 The feasibility of expanding the commuter rail Gautrain from Lanseria through Honeydew to Sandton, build an additional line from Mamelodi, north-east of Pretoria, to Naledi, west of Johannesburg, and extend the service from OR Tambo International Airport to Boksburg will be completed by March... 

GE kicks off local production of Transnet locomotives 

By: Natalie Greve     8th December 2015 Digital industrial group GE has started production of the 233 GE Evolution Series locomotives it has been contracted to supply to State-owned Transnet Freight Rail (TFR) as part of its acquisition of 1 064 electric and diesel locomotives from four original-equipment manufacturers. The R50-billion... 

GE kicks off local production of Transnet locomotives

Transnet secures $2.5bn guarantee from Chinese agency

By: African News Agency      3rd December 2015 Transnet and China Export Credit Insurance Corporation (Sinosure) on Wednesday agreed to a $2.5-billion funding guarantee in a ceremony attended by South African President Jacob Zuma and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping, who is on a State visit to South Africa. The news came in a flurry of... 

Transnet secures $2.5bn guarantee from Chinese agency

South Africa and China sign megadeals worth R94-billion

By: African News Agency      3rd December 2015 South Africa and China signed agreements worth R94-billion, shortly after Chinese president Xi Jinping arrived for a state visit in Pretoria, President Jacob Zuma said on Wednesday. “We focused especially on our economic and trade relations. We have just witnessed the signing of 26 agreements... 

South Africa and China sign megadeals worth R94-billion
Photo by Reuters
Xi Jinping and Jacob Zuma

Safety body releases report on PRASA’s Afro 4000 locomotives 

By: News24Wire      3rd December 2015 A report into the controversial Afro 4000 locomotives has confirmed that they are at times too high for South Africa’s railway network, but shows they can still operate without causing any safety issues. The Railway Safety Regulator (RSR) published its report this week into the 13 locomotives... 

Safety body releases report on PRASA’s Afro 4000 locomotives

Substation explodes in Centurion

By: News24Wire      1st December 2015 Up to 60 people were injured when a substation near Pinedene train station in Centurion exploded on Tuesday morning. ER24 spokesperson Pieter Rossouw said initial reports indicated it was a train crash, but this was incorrect. 

PRASA seeks refund in dodgy tender debacle 

By: RDM News Wire      30th November 2015 Rail parastatal PRASA launched a dramatic court action this week to recover from one of South Africa's biggest ever tender debacles involving billions of rand‚ the newspaper reported. The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa wants the Spanish company that provided the controversial Afro 4000... 

PRASA seeks refund in dodgy tender debacle

Effectiveness of logistics consulting hinges on in-depth knowledge

By: Schalk Burger     27th November 2015 Effective logistics, import/export and manufacturing consulting services require detailed industry knowledge and experience, but can add significant value to these industries by providing expert advice on various technical elements in their value chains, says automotive and logistics consultancy... 

Effectiveness of logistics consulting hinges on in-depth knowledge
BRIAN VERWEY Effective management, review and administration of non-core elements can improve business operations and increase revenue and decrease unforeseen risks

Future planning key to public transit systems

By: Mia Breytenbach     27th November 2015 The implementation of new public transportation systems requires the consideration of the existing system and infrastructure requirements, while having the foresight to anticipate future system needs, says engineering, project and construction management services supplier Hatch Goba. The company... 

Future planning key to public transit systems
TRANSPORT TRANSFORMATION The GO!Durban transit system will comprise metro rail transit, rapid bus transit, road-based feeder services and complementary rail and bus services

IEC Holden

     27th November 2015 Canada-based electric motor and generator manufacturer IEC Holden has been operating in the global railway industry for 106 years, with over 60 years of experience in manufacturing traction motors for locomotives. The company serves eight of the world's largest rail original-equipment... 

IEC Holden

Johannesburg municipality to continue public transport initiatives  

By: Mia Breytenbach     27th November 2015 The City of Johannesburg municipality plans to continue its focus on the implementation of an integrated transport system through its transport legacy projects following the EcoMobility World Festival 2015, in the Sandton central business district (CBD). “[The festival] proved . . . that there is... 

Johannesburg municipality to continue public transport initiatives
Johannesburg executive mayor Parks Tau discusses the impact of the EcoMobility month and the way forward

SA public transport projects gaining traction – services firm

By: Mia Breytenbach     27th November 2015 Despite the current project affordability constraints, South Africa has made exponential improvements in progressing its public transport projects, says professional services firm KPMG. “There is increased awareness of the absolute need for better public transport,” stresses KPMG infrastructure... 

SA public transport projects  gaining traction – services firm
DEFINED STRATEGY Defining a strategy for public transport services prompted the public and private sectors to initiate several public transport infrastructure projects in recent years

South African infrastructure assets rank 33 in global 500 ranking

By: Samantha Herbst     27th November 2015 The South African government has been ranked thirty-third out of this year’s top 500 global infrastructure owners, up two places from last year with a 0.55% increase in its infrastructure assets to $81.03-billion, as measured by reported net tangible fixed assets. Three other local entities made... 

South African infrastructure assets rank 33 in global 500 ranking
Photo by Duane Daws
TOP 500 Bentley's list of global infrastructure owners provides an understanding of the dollar value of assets owned by some of the world’s top owner-operators

Alstom to acquire 51% of SA’s CTLE rail company

By: Irma Venter     26th November 2015  Rail group Alstom announced on Thursday that it had signed an agreement to purchase 51% of South African rail company Commuter Transport & Locomotive Engineering (CTLE), for an undisclosed amount. CTLE, specialising in the modernisation of trains, was previously known as Union Carriage and Wagon... 

 Alstom to acquire 51% of SA’s CTLE rail company

Upgraded City Deep seen as key to improving Joburg-Durban logistics performance 

By: Terence Creamer     26th November 2015 State-owned freight logistics group Transnet formally opened its upgraded City Deep inland port on Thursday, reporting that its yearly container handling capacity had been doubled to 400 000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEU) following an R800-million investment programme. The terminal, which is... 

Upgraded City Deep seen as key to improving Joburg-Durban logistics performance
Transnet CEO Siyabonga Gama on the role of the upgraded City Deep inland port, in Johannesburg, in supporting the group’s road-to-rail strategy. Camera Work & Editing: Nicholas Boyd. Recorded: 26.11.2015

Banks offer up R12bn in Transnet deal as parastatal eyes R500bn spend over coming decade  

By: Natalie Greve     23rd November 2015 Boosting the coffers earmarked for its ambitious locomotive fleet acquisition programme, State-owned logistics group Transnet has announced the successful conclusion of a R12-billion club loan with five of the country’s major financial institutions, ratifying what the parastatal described as... 

Banks offer up R12bn in Transnet deal as parastatal eyes R500bn spend over coming decade
Transnet acting group CEO Siyabonga Gama announces a R12-billion club loan facility.

Scopa members irked by PRASA board’s lack of answers 

By: RDM News Wire      18th November 2015 The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) board was sent packing by Parliament’s Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) committee after it failed to adequately answer questions about the procurement of new locomotives. Members of Parliament’s watchdog committee asked several... 

Scopa members irked by PRASA board’s lack of answers

Prasa launches high-tech Gauteng rail nerve centre 

By: Creamer Media Reporter      12th November 2015 Consolidating the province’s eight existing passenger train control rooms into a single, high-tech ‘super’ control centre that will act as Gauteng’s passenger signalling hub, Prasa earlier this month officially launched the Gauteng Rail Nerve Centre in Tembisa.  

Prasa launches high-tech Gauteng rail nerve centre
Prasa launches high-tech Gauteng rail nerve centre

PRASA: Government has final say on new CEO 

By: RDM News Wire      9th November 2015 The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) has started the process of finding a new CEO in place of Lucky Montana‚ who was sacked earlier this year. In adverts for the post which appeared in newspapers last week‚ PRASA states that they are looking for “a results-orientated individual” “who... 

PRASA: Government has final say on new CEO

Bearing company trials new product on railway vehicles

     6th November 2015 Bearing company SKF’s intelligent bearing technology is being deployed on a railway vehicle in a new project to monitor axle bearings wirelessly.  

Bearing company  trials new product  on railway vehicles
INTELLIGENT BEARING SKF’s intelligent bearing integrates a self-powered sensor and wireless device within a conventional bearing envelope

Drive components tested on Russian locomotive

     6th November 2015 With considerable investment in railway infrastructure upgrades in South Africa, drive components and systems company Voith is well-positioned to add substantial value to this market with its tried-and-trusted and internationally recognised product offering.  

Drive components  tested on Russian  locomotive
HARSH TESTING The Russian locomotives will undergo a number of tests and certifications over a six-month period

Engine remanufacturer expands locomotives services 

By: Dylan Slater     6th November 2015 Germiston-based large-engine remanufacturer Metric Automotive Engineering has invested in new equipment to extend its services to larger engines for the locomotives industry, says operations director Andrew Yorke.  

Engine remanufacturer  expands locomotives services
Metric Automotive Engineering operations director Andrew Yorke tells Engineering News about the company’s latest investment

Locomotive autopilot achieves 100-million miles

     6th November 2015 Multinational conglomerate and locomotive manufacturer General Electric (GE) Transportation announced last month that its locomotive auto-pilot control system Trip Optimizer has clocked 100-million auto-pilot miles in locomotives equipped with the software.  

Rail certification secures international orders

     6th November 2015 Having received its manufacturing technology EN13261 certification in July, Germiston-based railway axle manufacturer Swasap is now able to supply to any European railway operator, and has since secured a significant order from French train company Bombardier – one of the third largest... 

Rail certification secures international orders
MANUFACTURING FACILITY Swasap supplies Transnet with most of its axles

Rail system requires efficient streamlining, says consulting firm

     6th November 2015 South Africa’s extensive railway system is an infrastructure requirement that cannot be overlooked, says engineering and consulting firm GIBB technical executive electrical engineer Dr Willem Sprong.  

Rail system requires efficient streamlining, says consulting firm
ENHANCING OPERATIONS To be efficient, high levels of productivity with a minimum level of wasted effort or expense are required

Steam locomotive operator undertakes refurbishment contract   

By: Dylan Slater     6th November 2015 Germiston-based nonprofit association and steam locomotive operator Reefsteamers Association is undertaking a dual refurbishment project on two mainline steam locomotives to return them to full operation.  

Steam locomotive operator  undertakes refurbishment contract
steam locomotive expert Shaun Ackerman tells Engineering News about Reefsteamers’ newly refurbished locomotive wheel lathe. Cameraperson: Dylan Slater.

University completes bogie certification tests

By: Dylan Slater     6th November 2015 In conjunction with the University of Pretoria’s (UP’s) Centre for Asset Integrity Management (C-AIM), UP’s business division, Business Enterprises, which is situated at UP, has completed a series of static and fatigue tests on a locally manufactured locomotive bogie as part of State-owned... 

University completes bogie certification tests
TEST RIG The test involved a large-scale application of wire strain gauges, with simultaneous data logging of over 100 channels

S African govt's ranking rises among global infrastructure owners 

By: Samantha Herbst     5th November 2015 The South African government has been ranked thirty-third out of this year’s top 500 global infrastructure owners, up two places from last year with a 0.55% increase in its infrastructure assets to $81.03-billion, as measured by reported net tangible fixed assets. Three other local entities made... 

S African govt's ranking rises among global infrastructure owners 

GE exec urges South Africa to broaden localisation architecture 

By: Terence Creamer     3rd November 2015 Increasing local content in purchases by government departments and State-owned companies is viewed as a key pillar of South Africa’s reindustrialisation efforts. But the head of GE Transportation Africa, Thomas Konditi, believes the initiative could be augmented through the creation of a... 

GE exec urges South Africa to broaden localisation architecture
GE Transportation Africa CEO Thomas Konditi

Peters calls for critical review of National Transport Master Plan to improve it 

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     30th October 2015 Transport Minister Dipuo Peters has asked National Transport Master Plan (Natmap) Synopsis Update Colloquium participants, particularly those who do not stem from government, to not avoid being “very critical” of the plan. The long-delayed Natmap was designed to guide South Africa’s transport... 

Peters calls for critical review of National Transport Master Plan to improve it

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