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Prasa spends billions on train safety

Prasa is spending nearly a billion rand each year to fight crime on trains.

Prasa CEO Mosenggwa Mofi briefs an audience on plans to improve Metrorail services in Cape Town on 12 June 2012. Picture: Aletta Gardner/EWN

CAPE TOWN - The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) on Thursday said it spends nearly a billion rand each year fighting crime on it trains.

Millions of South Africans use Metrorail services every day.

Prasa launched its National Rail Safety Campaign in Cape Town earlier.

From permanently open doors to broken windows and crime, that is what some commuters experience on a daily basis on Metrorail trains.

Prasa acknowledged these problems but said it is putting measures in place to address the challenges.

Part of this includes additional security guards to work with rail police officers.

Platform marshals will also be added to ensure that no train moves with an open door and generally ensuring that commuters adhere to the safety rules.

Prasa's Mosenngwa Mofi said theft and vandalism to infrastructure also poses a huge challenge to them.

Earlier in 2012, a Dutch national was injured after he was hit by a rock while he was in a train.

In a separate incident, a teenager was thrown out of a moving train in the Cape flats.

The company has since committed itself to improving passenger safety.