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The Train is New insists Mabeo

The Minister of Transport and Communications Tshenolo Mabeo has assured Parliament Wednesday that allegations that the new BR Express train is a second hand train are not true.

The Minister was delivering a statement in which he explained that the recent technical fault that led to the delay of the BR Express was a power shut down of the generator van. He said it was found that water had mixed with diesel in the generator van that pulls the coaches.

Mabeo said following the launch of the passenger train on 22 March 2016, the first train set consisting of two Business class coaches, six standard class coaches, one luggage van, one Buffet car and one power car proceeded to Francistown to commence service on 23 March 2016.

It was stabled in Mahalapye to enable viewing by the public after which it then proceeded to Francistown.

"The train developed some problems with the power car between Mahalapye and Palapye. The engine for the power plant shut down, neither that engine nor the standby engine would start. The power car is the only power supply for air conditioners, toilets and lights. This then resulted in all these facilities shutting down," explained Mabeo.

He said both train sets developed problems with their air conditioning units, malfunctioning toilets and power tripping.

"Botswana Railways sent the train set to Mafikeng for maintenance every day since the 25 March 2016. All the notable defects have been rectified on both the train sets and are now in good condition, with both trains having resumed full service," he added.

Mabeo said investigations are still ongoing which upon their completion they will be able to tell how the diesel was contaminated and who administered the fuel.

"The train was still at a commissioning stage therefore problems can be expected,the coaches have a two year warranty and they are yet to get a certificate of acceptance," he said.

 

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