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Public Transport News

Despite improvements, rail safety remains a concern – RSR

By: Donna Slater     27th November 2020 Despite improvements in some areas of national railway safety, statistics in the latest 'State of Railway Safety Report 2019/20', published on November 27, reveals “a grim picture of safety within the railway industry”, the Railway Safety Regulator (RSR) reports. Despite an overall 24% reduction... 

Buses, trains shunned in favour of cars and taxis, Gauteng travel survey reveals

By: Irma Venter     27th November 2020 Low-capacity transport modes, such as minibus taxis and private cars, have become the backbone of the transport network in Gauteng province, as opposed to high-capacity modes, such as rail and buses. This is one of the main findings of the 2019/20 Gauteng Household Transport Survey (GHTS),... 

Gautrain to complete electric-bus pilot project by end-2021

By: Irma Venter     27th November 2020 The Gautrain Management Agency (GMA) is busy with a feasibility study to investigate the possible future use of alternative drivetrains in the Gautrain bus fleet, says GMA COO Tshepo Kgobe. As part of this programme, the GMA expects to complete a pilot project, employing an electric bus, at the... 

Gibela confident of meeting 2029 deadline 

By: Irma Venter     12th November 2020 Train-maker Gibela is confident it can meet the terms of its R51-billion contract to deliver 600 newly-built train sets to the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) by 2029, despite the impact of Covid-19, says CEO Hector Danisa. Gibela in 2013 signed a R51-billion contract to supply... 

Gibela confident of meeting 2029 deadline
Hector Danisa

Golden Arrow operator keen on running passenger rail service in Cape Town 

By: Irma Venter     5th November 2020 Hosken Passenger Logistics & Rail (HPL&R), which among others operates the Golden Arrow bus service in Cape Town, is interested in expanding its operations to become a private participant in the country’s rail sector, confirms HPL&R spokesperson Bronwen Dyke-Beyer. HPL&R is listed on the JSE, and... 

Golden Arrow operator keen on running passenger rail service in Cape Town

The 'jig is up' for rail saboteurs - Mbalula tells Parliament

By: News24Wire      4th November 2020 Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula wants the "might of the law unleashed" on those responsible for the destruction of South Africa's rail infrastructure. "The jig is up," he told the National Assembly on Tuesday. 

South Africa begins talks to regulate key minibus taxi industry

By: Bloomberg     3rd November 2020 South Africa’s government began talks to regulate the minibus taxi industry, a key economic sector that transports 40% of the population but whose reputation has been tarnished by lawlessness and a poor safety record. The private industry employs 300 000 drivers and generates an estimated... 

South Africa begins talks to regulate key minibus taxi industry

The taxi industry is 'the lifeblood of public transport', but we must fix problems – Ramaphosa 

By: News24Wire      29th October 2020 President Cyril Ramaphosa has described the taxi industry as the "lifeblood of our public transport system", but has also emphasised that problems need to be tackled. Ramaphosa - who is self-isolating after possible exposure to Covid-19 at a fundraiser event over the weekend - addressed various... 

The taxi industry is 'the lifeblood of public transport', but we must fix problems – Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa

PRASA appoints acting CEO

By: Creamer Media Reporter      27th October 2020 The newly appointed board of control of the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) held its first meeting on October 27 and appointed group executive for human capital management Thandeka Mabija acting CEO with immediate effect. She is expected to hold the acting CEO position for a maximum... 

Smart mobility plan launched to improve Gauteng transport by 2030 

By: Donna Slater     27th October 2020 The Gauteng MEC for Public Transport and Roads Infrastructure Jacob Mamabolo on October 27 launched the province’s Smart Mobility 2030 Plan, which is a roadmap aimed at addressing the province’s transport challenges. He pointed out that the two biggest challenges in the province are congestion... 

Gauteng’s Transport Authority to be formally established by the end of the year 

By: Simone Liedtke     16th October 2020 The Transport Authority of Gauteng (TAG) will be formally established by the end of this year, interim CEO Jack van der Merwe confirmed on October 16. Speaking during an engagement session, he lamented that the Covid-19 pandemic had somewhat delayed the process but said that final board... 

Gauteng’s Transport Authority to be formally established by the end of the year

Buses, trains shunned in favour of cars, taxis, reveals Gauteng travel survey 

By: Irma Venter     15th October 2020 Low capacity transport modes, such as minibus taxis and private cars, have become the backbone of the transport network in the Gauteng province, as opposed to high-capacity modes, such as rail and buses. This is one of the main findings of the 2019/20 Gauteng Household Transport Survey (GHTS),... 

Buses, trains shunned in favour of cars, taxis, reveals Gauteng travel survey

Gautrain, Numsa settle wage dispute

By: Simone Liedtke     15th October 2020 Gautrain and the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) have signed a wage proposal made by the Bombela Operating Company (BOC), who manages the Gautrain, effectively ending the strike that started on October 5. The standard Gautrain train service will resume on October 16, while... 

Gautrain, Numsa settle wage dispute

Concessioning best option to revive urban rail, says former Gauteng Transport MEC  

By: Irma Venter     13th October 2020 Metrorail has little chance to revive its rail services in Gauteng, says University of Johannesburg senior research associate Dr Ismail Vadi.  He is also the former Gauteng Roads and Transport MEC. 

Concessioning best option to revive urban rail, says former Gauteng Transport MEC
Dr Ismail Vadi

Johannesburg mayor warns rogue business forums not to delay projects

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     6th October 2020 Johannesburg Executive Mayor Geoffrey Makhubo has warned "business forums" not to interfere in service delivery projects. “The stopping of service delivery projects by business forums will not be tolerated as it delays the completion of projects and the provision of much-needed service to the... 

BOC says contingency plans in place for Gautrain strike

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     5th October 2020 Operator of the Gautrain, the Bombela Operating Company (BOC), says it will implement a contingency plan to ensure it is able to still deliver a train service to its passengers after trade union, the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) announced that its members would embark on... 

Numsa serves notice for Gautrain strike

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     2nd October 2020 Trade union the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) on October 2 issued a notice to strike at the Bombela Operating Company (BOC) − the management and operating company for the Gautrain. The union said its members would, as of the morning of October 5, go on an indefinite... 

Gautrain extension will improve Gauteng’s competitiveness, says GMA  

By: Irma Venter     30th September 2020 Even if the next phase of the Gautrain rail system were to get the green light from National Treasury today, it would take three to four years before construction could start on the project, says Gautrain Management Agency (GMA) CEO William Dachs. “This is a very ambitious, long-term plan,” he... 

Gautrain extension will improve Gauteng’s competitiveness, says GMA

Maintenance work completed during lockdown 

By: Halima Frost     25th September 2020 A team of eight work-at-height specialists representing rope access company Skyriders has safely completed the cleaning and maintenance of two storage tanks at a petrochemicals producer, in Mpumalanga. The maintenance project, which was conducted during Level 5 of the Covid-19 lockdown period,... 

Maintenance work completed during lockdown
Skyriders marketing manager Mike Zinn discusses a recently completed maintenance project that required specialised rope access expertise. Camerawork: Halima Frost. Editing: Nicholas Boyd. Recorded: 21.08.2020

Big loss for Gautrain predicted as ridership falls, owing to Covid-19

By: Irma Venter     18th September 2020 Weekday Gautrain rail ridership has fallen to 7 478 passenger trips a day, about 14% of pre-Covid-19 levels, says Gautrain Management Agency (GMA) COO Tshepo Kgobe. Bus ridership is at 16% of pre-Covid-19 levels, at 2 974 passenger trips a day. 

Security function now top priority at PRASA, says CEO

By: Irma Venter     18th September 2020 While Covid-19 has given the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) the opportunity to “stop and think” about its service offering and the way forward for the rail entity, it also left the door open for severe vandalism of its assets during the national lockdown, says CEO Nosipho Damasane.... 

Security function now top priority at PRASA, says CEO 

By: Irma Venter     7th September 2020 While Covid-19 has given the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) the opportunity to “stop and think” about its service offering and the way forward for the rail entity, it also left the door open for severe vandalism of its assets during the national lockdown, says CEO Nosipho Damasane.... 

Security function now top priority at PRASA, says CEO

Gibela has spent R6bn on local procurement since 2014 

By: Marleny Arnoldi     28th August 2020 Train manufacturer Gibela has launched its first socioeconomic impact report, sharing the progress it has made in terms of economic, social and environmental initiatives from January 2014 to March this year. Gibela was formed in 2013 as a black economic empowerment consortium through French... 

Gibela has spent R6bn on local procurement since 2014
Gibela CEO Hector Danisa

Interprovincial travel allowed, four more airports to reopen, says Mbalula

By: News24Wire      25th August 2020 Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula announced on Tuesday that four more airports have been permitted to operate under Level 2 travel regulations. A total of 18 airports are now be able to operate. 

Six buses stoned in Atlantis in the Western Cape

By: News24Wire      25th August 2020 Eight people were injured when six Sibanye buses were stoned in the Witsand area of Atlantis in the Western Cape on Tuesday morning. Seven passengers and a driver were treated for minor injuries. 

Gautrain set for big loss as ridership falls owing to Covid-19 

By: Irma Venter     21st August 2020 Weekday Gautrain rail ridership has fallen to about 14% of pre-Covid-19 levels, to 7 478 passenger trips a day, says Gautrain Management Agency (GMA) COO Tshepo Kgobe. Bus ridership is at 16% of pre-Covid-19 levels, at 2 974 passenger trips a day. 

Gautrain set for big loss as ridership falls owing to Covid-19
Tshepo Kgobe

Covid-19 to have lasting impact on the transport sector

By: Irma Venter     14th August 2020 The Covid-19 pandemic means it will never again be business as usual for the transport sector, says Transport Authority for Gauteng (TAG) CEO Jack van der Merwe. The disease has upended almost every aspect of the sector, with a number of changes threatening to be permanent. 

Covid-19 to have lasting impact on the transport sector

Alstom Southern Africa appoints new MD

By: Irma Venter     7th August 2020 Rail transport company Alstom has appointed Bernard Peille the new MD of Alstom Southern Africa, effective July 15.  Peille joined Alstom in 1989. He has more than 30 years’ experience in the railway industry, with particular expertise in design, industrial site development, management of rolling... 

Covid-19 compliance exacting huge costs on contracted bus sector

By: Irma Venter     31st July 2020 It costs about R1.3-million a day, or R34-million a month, for the contracted public transport bus sector to adhere to the hygiene and safety protocols implemented under the Covid-19 pandemic, says South African Bus Operators Association (Saboa) executive manager Bazil Govender. The sector... 

PRASA, railway equipment company managers arrested for theft

By: Irma Venter     27th July 2020 The Organised Crime Unit of the South Africa Police Service (SAPS) and the Protection Services of the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) on the weekend arrested two suspects in possession of stolen PRASA assets, worth almost R2-million. One of the suspects is a PRASA branch manager at... 

PRASA, railway equipment company managers arrested for theft

Metrorail recovers R1.3m in stolen feeder wire  

By: Irma Venter     24th July 2020 Metrorail’s Gauteng Protection Services this week recovered stolen feeder wire worth an estimated R1.3-million. Metrorail’s Rapid Response Unit intercepted a truck carrying four pallets of Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa feeder wires.   

Metrorail recovers R1.3m in stolen feeder wire 

Taxi assistance approved in principle, says TAG’s Van der Merwe

By: Irma Venter     24th July 2020 Government has taken the policy decision to financially assist minibus taxis, but the mechanism to do this has not yet been determined, says Transport Authority of Gauteng (TAG) head Jack van der Merwe. “The short answer is that government has made a decision that taxis are a very important... 

UP, CSIR sign collaboration agreement on smart transport, cities 

By: Irma Venter     23rd July 2020 The University of Pretoria (UP) and the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), an entity of the Department of Science and Innovation (DSI), have signed a memorandum of agreement to collaborate in the areas of smart transport, cities and environments. “The cooperation means that UP... 

UP, CSIR sign collaboration agreement on smart transport, cities 

Alstom Southern Africa appoints new MD 

By: Irma Venter     22nd July 2020 Rail transport company Alstom has appointed Bernard Peille as the new MD of Alstom Southern Africa, effective July 15.  Bernard joined Alstom in 1989. He has more than 30 years’ experience in the railway industry, with particular expertise in design, industrial site development, management of... 

Alstom Southern Africa appoints new MD
Bernard Peille

Commuter rail sector urged to prepare for the future  

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     20th July 2020 South Africa's commuter rail industry must, while dealing with the immediate challenges of navigating through the Covid-19 pandemic, also ensure that it positions itself as a safer, more advanced and functional mode of public transport for the future, Gautrain Management Agency CEO William Dachs... 

Commuter rail sector urged to prepare for the future

Santaco hits back at Cosatu strike threats over taxi load capacity

By: News24Wire      20th July 2020 The South African National Taxi Council has said labour federation the Congress of South African Trade Union's threat to strike over the full loading capacity regulation for some taxis is unfortunate and disingenuous. "Santaco's battle with government has been nothing except for the survival of... 

Santaco hits back at Cosatu strike threats over taxi load capacity

PRASA to recruit 3 100 additional security guards

By: Marleny Arnoldi     20th July 2020 The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) has started a recruitment process to employee 3 100 security guards to protect its rail infrastructure and other assets. The recruitment drive will include static and train guards, operations monitoring controllers and armed response guards.  

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