As thousands of bus drivers went on strike today as a result of wage disputes, leaving South African commuters stranded, Metrorail stepped in to help passengers get to and from work. The train service both confirmed that they would be honouring Golden Arrow Bus Service (GABS) tickets and extending their hours and schedule.
Golden Arrow bus services as well as MyCiti buses were inactive and suspended from midnight on the 12 April. The City of Cape Town reportedly approached Metrorail to support the influx of commuters.
“We will be extending train operating hours and would also have to terminate some train sooner at key stations just to return and pick up more passengers. We might also have to do schedule adjustment during the course of the day depending on the volume,” stated Metrorail spokesperson, Riana Scott to EWN.
“Regular Metrorail commuters were however warned about trains having to potentially terminate at key stations to cope with the transporting of added commuters, “highlighted Metrorail.
Only current GABS tickets will be accepted at the various Metrorail stations, while the standard Metrorail rates will apply to other commuters.
A service advisory notice was posted on the train service Twitter page earlier this morning, detailing arrangements for commuters to note:
In the extending of their hours, Metrorail have also released the planned times of arrival and departure, of their operating trains, on their three major lines for today.
The strike has left an around 300 000 commuters in the Cape alone without their usual transport, while in Johannesburg an estimated 500 000 have been affected. At this stage it is unclear as to when negotiations between the bus companies and the unions will commence.
Commuters country wide are further being urged to make alternative travel arrangements.