South Coast line up and running again after May’s storm

Transnet Freight Rail (TFR) has reported that its South Coast line, which was significantly damaged during heavy storms in May, is “back on track in record time”.

Railways and related equipment in the Umfazazane, Ifafa and Umthwalume areas were “particularly hard hit”, and this meant that “all operations on the South Coast line were suspended pending the restoration of infrastructure”.

Rehabilitation work necessitated in the aftermath of the storm included, among other things, the removal and replacement of railway tracks and sleepers, structural stabilising of track terrain, bridge repair, and general clean-up and reinstatement work.

Suspended operations were said to have particularly affected cement manufacturer NPC, a regular TFR client and frequent shipper of product by rail.

In a statement released yesterday, Transnet said: “The execution of the work was declared an emergency since it had a significant impact on the economy. Work commenced on June 24 but was disrupted by private and municipal concerns vying for contracts to assist in the repairs.

“By July 18 that consultative process was completed and repair work resumed by August 2. 

“The work was scheduled to be completed by August 28, but with 24-hour operations introduced and additional resources allocated, the teams completed their work well ahead of schedule and opened the line to traffic on August 19.”

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