In the wake of the biggest MRT breakdown in Singapore history, Minister for Transport Lui Tuck Yew has finally come up with a statement, although his words are probably little comfort to the many Singaporeans still stuck outside in the sweltering heat, squeezed like sardines into MRT train cabins, buses and long snaking queues for alternate modes of public transport.
“I am extremely concerned with today’s incident,” Lui wrote on his Facebook. “This is the first time that services on both the North-South and East-West Lines were affected at the same time. I am sorry that so many commuters experienced massive disruptions to their journeys during the evening peak hours.”
He added that he has “told SMRT and LTA to work through the night to fully recover train services and ensure that services run properly tomorrow.”
The massive disruption, which has affected nearly 250,000 commuters, not including those affected by the massive traffic jams around MRT stations, expressways and roads caused by the massive flux of commuters taking alternative means of public and private transport, is still ongoing despite the best efforts of MRT technicians and police officers.
Readers have sent in eye witness reports stating that they had witnessed tempers flaring in incidents where commuters had accidentally bumped into one another. One incident had devolved into a minor shouting match between two men.
Meanwhile, as of publishing time, the MRT services along the East-West Line have resumed although the North-South Line continues to be non-operational.