The construction of Haifa-Tripoli Railway in 1942:

From Haifa to Beirut the construction was carried out by South African engineers and it is interesting to note that a temporary 1.05m gauge line was in use in April 1942 on the 14 miles between Damour Bridge and Beirut so that narrow gauge facilities at the latter place could be used for supplying materials. In June the South Africans were transferred elsewhere and the finishing touches were added by two New Zealand RE companies. Regular military traffic started on 24th August 1942, including three passenger services per week.

From Beirut to Tripoli construction was by Australian Royal Engineers, except for the difficult Chekka tunnel which was built by a tunnelling company recruited from South African miners for this special job. By July 1942 the 14 miles from Chekka Cement Works to Tripoli were already in use but the whole line from Beirut was not completed until 18th December.

Description of the footage: Ras Chekka area, between Beirut and Tripoli, Syria, 1942. Australian Railway Unit with British and South African Engineer Corps working on the construction of the railroad between Beirut and Tripoli. Shows parts of the terrain covered and magnitude of the engineering feat involved.