Technical Support and Spares Supply Agreement (TSSSA)

Technical Support and Spares Supply Agreement

In addition to its contract with the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) for the supply of 600 new commuter trains over 10 years, Gibela has a 19-year Technical Support and Spares Supply Agreement (TSSSA ) with the agency.

In terms of this agreement, as its name implies, Gibela will provide maintenance and technical support as well as spare parts for the new trains.

Ultimately, the TSSSA will have a national footprint, with facilities in south and north Gauteng, Cape Town, Durban and the Eastern Cape.

The north Gauteng depot, at Wolmerton in Pretoria, has been up and running for some time. Here, a range of functions in support of the new trains already in service in the province are in place:

  • warranty and corrective maintenance;
  • retrofit and field modifications;
  • materials management;
  • performance monitoring and continuous improvement;
  • fleet reliability growth;
  • reliability, availability, maintainability and safety studies (RAMS); and
  • technical support- embracing a helpdesk, field assistance and training.

The Cape Town depot began operating during 2019 with the deployment to the Mother City by PRASA of two new train. It is expected that a further eight trains will be deployed to Cape Town in the first quarter of 2020 and 20 more in the third quarter. The Durban depot is expected to be operational in time for the deployment there by PRASA of two trains by mid-2020.

At the Alstom Ubunye* facility, at Nigel in Ekurhuleni, the focus is on:

  • project administration;
  • supply chain, involving material requirement planning, procurement;
  • central warehousing for maintenance, warranty and retrofit;
  • capital spares dynamic storage;
  • maintenance engineering (equipment); and
  • industrial engineering (methods).

A control room at Alstom Ubunye allows for centralised monitoring of the performance of the train fleet and a help desk is also available during the trains’ operating hours.

*Alstom Ubunye was previously known as Union Carriage and Wagon (UCW). Established in 1957, UCW became Commuter Transport & Locomotive Engineering (CTLE).  In April 2016, Alstom acquired a 51% stake in CTLE and renamed the company Alstom Ubunye.

Around 150 people are already employed full time within the operational components of the TSSSA , more than half of them women. Extensive attention is paid in this part of the business, as is the case throughout Gibela, on employee training and development.