Expatica news

S. Africa’s luxury Blue Train suspended after ‘incidents’

Travel on South Africa’s luxury Blue Train, which connects Cape Town to Pretoria in two days, has been suspended until further notice after several incidents including a derailment.

“As a precautionary measure following the recent incidents involving the Blue Train, management has taken the decision to temporarily suspend operations while the train undergoes a thorough technical assessment,” South Africa’s state-owned transport company, Transnet, said in a statement.

It will then be put back into service, the company said, without giving a timeline.

In November, the train derailed at the exit of a station located about 20 kilometres (12 miles) from Johannesburg. It was not carrying any passengers and the accident did not cause any injuries.

Early this month, a wagon being repaired in a depot near the capital was hit by a fire.

An investigation is under way to determine the cause of the fire, while a person apprehended by the security service was handed over to the police.

The Blue Train, which dates to 1923, has grown more luxurious over the years with butlers, gourmet meals and the finest cognacs served along with Cuban cigars.

Stopped for several months because of Covid, the train resumed service in November 2020, boarding mainly South Africans.