Four dead, 620 injured in deadly Pretoria train crash
By Iavan Pijoos | TimesLive |
Four people died and 620 other commuters were injured when two trains collided near Pretoria’s Mountain View train station, Netcare911 said on Tuesday afternoon.
Netcare911 spokesperson Shawn Herbst told TimesLIVE that injuries suffered ranged from minor to moderate.
“All the people have been removed. One person sustained critical injuries.”
Metrorail spokesperson Lillian Mofokeng said the two trains were both travelling on the same line towards Pretoria from Mabopane.
Mofokeng said a board of inquiry would be instituted to determine the root cause of the accident.
Trains running between Pretoria, Mabopane and Dewildt are temporarily suspended until further notice.
All commuters in possession of valid weekly and monthly tickets will be transported by bus until the line is reopened.
Metrorail said it would set up a walk-in centre at Pretoria station to assist commuters involved in the accident.
“We urge commuters to bring the relevant documents with for processing,” Mofokeng said.
Gauteng MEC for roads and transport Ismail Vadi has called on the Passenger Rail Agency of SA and the Railway Safety Regulator to “urgently investigate” the cause of the crash.
Vadi said urgent measures must also be implemented to improve commuters’ safety on trains.
“We are deeply shocked by this tragic accident so early in the new year.
“We would like to express our heartfelt condolences to the families of the deceased and wish those injured a speedy recovery,” Vadi said.
President Cyril Ramaphosa sent his condolences to the crash victims.
“Our thoughts are with those who lost their lives and their families. To the injured I would like to wish you all a speedy recovery,” Ramaphosa said.
“I would like to also encourage emergency services team on the scene to do all in their powers to help those who are still trapped under the train.”
Transport minister Blade Nzimande, Prasa and the Railway Safety Regulator will host a media briefing on Tuesday at 5pm.