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Transport union wants armed response after violent incidents at train stations

At least two Metrorail trains were set alight in the metro this week in separate incidents a few days apart.

This undated file photo shows a torched train coach. Picture: Cindy Archillies/EWN

CAPE TOWN - The United National Transport Union wants the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) to establish an armed response unit to protect staff and Metrorail infrastructure in the Western Cape.

The trade union approached the Western Cape High Court last month for an order to compel Prasa to ensure a safe working environment for employees.

This follows a series of incidents over the last year in which the rail agency's property has been stolen or damaged.

At least two Metrorail trains were set alight in the metro this week in separate incidents a few days apart.

The union's general secretary Steve Harris says the busy central line is a concern.

“You need to get an SAPD force in there that’s trained. And if you put people at certain stations along the line, if the train comes to a halt, within five minutes, they should be there immediately and there should be arrangements made to take people off the train.”

(Edited by Zinhle Nkosi)

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