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Engineers have confirmed that the railway lines between Isipingo and Umbogintwini will be closed for at least two months – and maybe longer.
Both sets of lines were severely damaged by heavy rainfalls in the Toti area on the weekend of 13 and 14 May.
“Work to repair the lines will start next week,” said Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) acting head of department, marketing and communication, Isabel van der Westhuizen.
“Perway engineers have estimated the line will be closed for a minimum of two months, but it could be longer because it seems to be worse than last year’s washaway along Bernadotte Street.
The engineer has confirmed it is a re-construction of the railway embankment. The rain caused the water pipe to burst, which caused damage to the embankment. It is not the same as last year’s washaway, which was a culvert.”
Last August’s heavy rainfall saw the railway lines running along Bernadotte Street dangling in the air after a washaway of the culvert that ran beneath it. Repairs took four months to complete.
No costing to repair the recent damage is available as yet.
A shuttle service ferrying commuters between Umbogintwini and Isipingo via bus will continue to run between Durban and Isipingo, and Umbogintwini to Kelso.
Commuters are asked to refrain from venting their anger on PRASA staff and damaging PRASA property.
It is recommended commuters consider alternative transport if punctuality is critical to their travel. PRASA apologised for the inconvenience and appealed for patience and understanding during this period.