A TransNamib freight train carrying manganese ore derailed last Thursday about six kilometres outside Arandis in Erongo Region.
The train driver and his assistant were seriously injured in the accident and the assistant train driver succumbed to his injuries on Friday morning in the Medi-Clinic Cottage Hospital in Swakopmund.
His name cannot be released as his next of kin had yet to be informed.
Acting Chief Executive Officer of TransNamib, Webster Gonzo, said the goods train of 35 wagons was carrying manganese ore from Okahandja to Walvis Bay when the accident occurred. He explained that the derailment occurred about six kilometres from Arandis when three wagons detached from the main train. Due to the impact of the detachment, the two locomotives and 32 wagons left the track.
TransNamib immediately on Thursday night cancelled all passenger train services between Windhoek and Walvis Bay and also temporarily closed rail traffic between Arandis and Usakos until further notice due to the extensive and costly damage caused to the railway line, said Gonzo. He said all other passenger and goods train services would not be affected by the accident and would operate as normal.
TransNamib on Friday morning dispatched a team of internal experts to the accident scene to ascertain the full extent of the damage and to start with immediate rehabilitation measures.
"The team is already hard at work on the site and will release the necessary information they gather in due course," he said. By Friday afternoon the financial impact caused by the accident was not yet known. This is the second TransNamib freight train derailment in the Erongo Region in four months.
In December last year a freight train also travelling from Okahandja to Walvis Bay and also carrying manganese ore derailed near Dune 7. About 80 metres of the railway line had to be repaired, and TransNamib spent close to N$65 million on repairing the railway track as well as to replace the damaged locomotives and flatbed wagons.