SINGAPORE – Two trains stalled on the tracks of the Bukit Panjang LRT line on Saturday (Sept 9) morning, with SMRT staff having to guide about 10 passengers to safety at the nearest station.
The stalling of the two trains at separate times on Saturday morning brought train services to a halt on the entire line.
While the first train was moved back to the depot, a second train stalled after service had recovered. Engineers are still working to move the second train back to the depot, transport operator SMRT said in a Facebook post at 11.53am.
“The incident train was recovered and pulled back to the depot,” SMRT wrote. “After service recovered, a second train stalled at the same stretch of track. As this second train could not continue service, around 10 passengers were guided by staff safely to the nearest station (Bukit Panjang LRT station).”
It added that its engineers were working to move the stalled train back to the depot, while it was checking the track to identify the root cause of the incident.
“Free bus services and bridging bus services are available for commuters as an alternative,” it added. “We are sorry for the inconvenience.”
The operator first announced the unavailability of services on the line in a tweet at 11.12am, saying that services on both Service A and B were affected.
Commuters had been reporting about the unavailability of service on the line from as early as 10am.
Twitter user Kimmy said at 10.01 am that the Bukit Panjang LRT was not working.
“Do not board,” he wrote. “I wasted 77 cents going in and coming out of (the) same station just now.”
Commuter Ronnie Goh, 39, told The Straits Times that he was at Senja station at around 9.35am on his way to a clinic.
“I was waiting for the train and around 9.45am, they started announcing that there was a train fault due to power failure. We were advised to go for alternative transport,” said the purchasing executive.
He said he waited for a bus instead and managed to reach Fajar around 10.30am, by which time train services were still unavailable.
When Mr Goh had finished his clinic visit at 12.15pm, all LRT train stations were closed, he said.
He shared a photo of a stalled two-car LRT train on the tracks near Ten Mile Junction station.
“I saw an engineer there checking on the train,” said Mr Goh.
When ST arrived at Bukit Panjang LRT station around 12.40pm, the station was closed and half-shuttered.
There was an unmoving LRT train on the tracks. A group of workers wearing bright orange vests were spotted near the train and they appeared to be trying to assess the situation.
A Bukit Panjang resident who wanted to be known as only Madam Chan told ST that she urged SMRT to “do something” to address the situation.
She added: “It’s embarrassing that the trains break down all the time. Luckily this time, it happened on a Saturday. Many residents here rely on the LRT to move around. It would have been very messy if this took place during the rush hours on a weekday.”
Additional reporting by Ian Cheng