Sanwo-Olu Inspects Red Line Train, Rail Facilities Ahead Thursday Commissioning

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Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Saturday, again tested the Red Line train, inspecting the tracks and the rail corridors ahead of next Thursday’s formal commissioning of the Lagos Rail Mass Transit (LRMT) infrastructure.

The 37-kilometre rail line, built by the Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA), is for inauguration next Thursday by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, along with its stations and other ancillary facilities. The Red Line traverses seven stations from Agbado, a boundary town in Ogun State, to Oyingbo in Lagos Central.

Sanwo-Olu, together with the Deputy Governor, Obafemi Hamzat, and members of the State cabinet, went with journalists on a train ride from the Ikeja Mega Station of the Red Line in a last-minute effort to ensure the infrastructure is ready for use.

The Red Line train, which left the garage track for the first time since it was delivered, departed Ikeja Mega Station at exactly 2:23 pm, moving steadily towards Agbado Station, and six minutes later, arrived at Agege Station. The journey proceeded to Iju Station, arriving at 2:38 pm — 15 minutes after leaving Ikeja.

While on board, Sanwo-Olu and his deputy checked the conditions of the train’s cars — a set of Talgo wagons built in Milwaukee, Wisconsin in the United States. Some of the comfort facilities inspected by the Governor included the train’s cooling system, handrails, cushioned seats and in-built safety features of the wagons.

After the inspection, Sanwo-Olu approved the train line for commissioning but added that there would be continuous enforcement to clear the train path of unapproved activities.

He said: “We just completed another inspection of the Red Rail Line facility and corridor; now we are back in Ikeja Mega Station. We all have just used the train to Iju and back. I’m sure our media men can fully report what we all witnessed in the course of the short journey. This rail infrastructure is ready for inauguration, but we still have a few cleanings.

“The challenge is the pedestrian interference on the rail track and unapproved activities along the corridor. We will continue with the enforcement against illegal use of the rail corridor. We are in talks with NRC (Nigeria Railway Corporation) to reinforce the train route with physical barriers to limit pedestrian interference.”

The Governor urged the State’s residents to adhere to the rules of using the rail line, noting that the infrastructure was not built for commercial activities.

The train operation, Sanwo-Olu said, would be regular and trips would be made every 15 minutes. He said it was necessary to eliminate incidents that could result in fatality along the track.

“We have reduced human interference on the track considerably over the last two months, but enforcement continues. The stations are ready, the trains are ready, and I believe Lagosians are ready to welcome this new infrastructure built for their use and benefit,” Sanwo-Olu said.

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