Blue day for luxury S.African train

1st December 2011, Comments 0 comments

A luxury passenger train in South Africa struck it double unlucky when it broke down because of stolen cables and a replacement locomotive then crashed into a wagon, a newspaper said Thursday.

Disgruntled passengers were bused 225 kilometres (140 miles) to Cape Town after the Blue Train made an unplanned stop at a small country town on Tuesday.

Thieves had stolen the power cables, leaving the train stranded in Matjiesfontein on the journey from Pretoria to Cape Town, according to the Afrikaans-language newspaper Die Burger.

Another mishap hit the train, which offers iconic yesteryear luxury travel for high-end tourists, when a locomotive that had to pull it back to Pretoria crashed into a wagon.

"The aggressive shunting damaged the train," Mike Asefovitz, spokesman for railway company Transnet Freight Rail, told the newspaper, referring to the process of switching locomotives.

No one was hurt in the crash.

Frustrated passengers were found to be drowning their sorrows at a local hotel, according to the newspaper.

Travellers who had tickets from Cape Town to Pretoria were bused to the town on Wednesday.

© 2011 AFP

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