Thursday, December 15, 2011

The Sishen Saldanha railway line - South Africa

The Sishen–Saldanha railway line  -   South Africa

The Sishen–Saldanha railway line, also known as the Ore Export Line, is an 861 kilometers (535 mi) long heavy haul railway line in South Africa. It connects iron ore mines near Sishen in the Northern Cape with the port at Saldanha Bay in the Western Cape.It is used primarily to transport iron ore and does not carry passenger traffic.

From an altitude of 1,295 meters (4,249 ft) at Sishen, the line climbs for 42 kilometers (26 mi) before descending to cross the Orange River about 10 kilometers (6 mi) downstream of Groblershoop.  For the next 300 kilometers (190 mi), the line rises and falls before descending towards the Atlantic coast. The railway crosses the Olifants River on a 1,035 meters (3,396 ft) viaduct between Vredendal and Lutzville and reaches the coast ambout 160 kilometers (100 mi) north of Saldanha. Fro here it follows a coastal route.

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