23 August 2012
Metrorail launches Railway Safety Campaign
Metrorail today launched a railway safety campaign in Cape Town which will be rolled out nationwide in the passenger/commuter rail environment. The purpose of the campaign is to communicate and implement interventions designed to improve safety and safeguard critical assets/infrastructure. The introduction of platform marshals will assist with crowd control and optimise crime prevention. The campaign also aims to raise safety awareness, increase visibility of security measures and engage commuters/communities on railway safety.
Metrorail CEO Mossengwa Mofi emphasised the vision of a crime free rail environment with optimum operations characterized by zero cancellations and minimum delays through strong partnerships with organs of civil society. He asserted that there is a clear and unambiguous onus on customers to assist in their own protection by complying with safety and legal instructions and observing instructions: 'Commuters must avoid risky behaviour and desist from breaking the law'.
Communication material has been distributed to educate, advise, recommend and sign post legal and operational safety requirements in the rail environment. The third component of the campaign comprise enforcement by security, Director of Public Prosecutions and the Railway Police (SARPS) through special actions, fines and prosecutions for offences such as mugging, carrying drugs, assault and preventing train doors from closing.
Commuters can expect visible security at stations/on platforms and platform marshals to enforce commuter compliance to safety measures. Transgressors who keep train doors open, jump in and out of moving trains with impunity, ride between carriages to evade fares and cross railway tracks illegally run the risk of arrest and possible prosecution. Customer comfort issues such as overcrowding and smoking in trains will also be addressed.
In the Western Cape we have deployed 569 Security and Protection staff and 400 railway police personnel. In addition to the deployed security personnel, platform marshalls have been deployed to augment our security capacity as follows:
Currently deployed - 84
Finishing training - 40
In training – 63
The safety campaign forms an integral part of the Western Cape's Programme of Action (PoA) launched in June this year. As promised at the time of the launch of Metrorail's PoA, subsequent interventions followed as the region unfolded its entire plan to improve travel conditions for Cape commuters.
He added that addressing commuter safety will add a further and crucial dimension to improving the train service for commuters: 'All our stakeholders have given us their unanimous support; the last partner to complete the circle is our commuter'. Mofi says the planned integration of camera surveillance with other entities like the City will make monitoring effective and integrate response to emergencies.
30 Wolmarans Street
The safety campaign includes platform marshalls at key stations to enforce safe commuting practices