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Untu warns of strike if Prasa fails to restore safety regulations in WC

The move comes after Prasa suspended several Untu-aligned train drivers on Thursday after they refused to work on the central line.

FILE: A train coach torched by angry commuters at CT Station. Untu-aligned train drivers refuse to work on the central line. Metrorail has described this line as the most dangerous route in the province. Picture: Cindy Archillies/EWN

CAPE TOWN - The United National Transport Union (Untu) has given the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) 48 hours to restore its safety regulations in the Western Cape.

If Prasa fails to do so, Untu will embark on a legal strike next week.

The move comes after Prasa suspended several Untu-aligned train drivers on Thursday after they refused to work on the central line. Metrorail has described this line as the most dangerous route in the province.

Untu's Steve Harris said: “We have declared the dispute today and we have asked that clause 64.4 of the Labour Act be implemented, which means that the company must restore the current safety agreements - which they’re not upholding.”

Harris explains some of the safety regulations are apparently being ignored.

“For argument’s sake, say that on a certain route you need three motor coaches that need to be on the consist of that particular train. However, management is now expecting that we use the train only with two motor coaches. So, in other words, you’ve only got two units that are actually powering the locomotive.”

Prasa has agreed to withdraw the suspension of the drivers and says it will meet with Untu regional leadership.

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