Suspect arrested following torching of train

The smoke from the burning trains at the Cape Town station. Picture: Lindiwe Mlandu
Mayor Dan Plato has welcomed the arrest of a suspect linked to the burning of a train at Cape Town station on Sunday April 21.

Two trains were destroyed in the fire that started on platform 13 before spreading to platform 14. Strong winds fanned the fire, resulting in an estimated damage of R33 million.

Mr Plato said, “I welcome the arrest of a suspect linked to the fire that set eight Metrorail carriages alight. I hope that the law will take its course and that the appropriate punishment will be meted out.”

More than 40 carriages have been burnt in 10 incidents of arson attacks since 2017. This has severely impacted the state of public transport in Cape Town.

Cape Town station has been the target of eight separate arson incidents alone since July 2018.

Mr Plato added that those responsible for the management of the rail network must also account to the Cape Town public for the ongoing inaction to protect trains.

Mayoral committee member for safety and security, JP Smith, said the City’s enforcement agencies are committed to working closely with other security services to bring those responsible to book.