Marizka Coetzer
4 minute read
18 Jan 2022
4:45 am

Glaring gap in new trains may be problem for elders and disabled

Marizka Coetzer

Problem for those in wheelchairs and the elderly was raised back in 2018 when the Dunnottar train factory first opened.

One of the new Prasa trains at the Pretoria station, 17 January 2022. Picture: Neil McCartney

The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) has introduced its new electric multiple unit trains in an attemptto revive the local railway industry, but seems to have missed a basic step in catering to its commuters. Is’timela Sabantu, or The People’s Train, boasts electronic noticeboards inside and out, spacious carriages with air conditioning and bigger parcel compartments. But it lacks one essential feature – easy access to the train for all. Elderly people or those in wheelchairs may have trouble getting up the 30cm-high step that is located about 20cm away from the platform. The issue has been raised...