Sunday, July 4, 2010

Is Our Crowded Trains Safe ?

It is unacceptable for the CEO of SMRT to acknowledge that she knew the trains are overcrowded but not do anything because they have not reached the stage where SMRT needs to employ 'pushers' or 'crush load' level.

This is not the way a socially responsible organisation is run. We do not wait till problem araises before acting. Overcrowding is a safety hazard by itself. Even a minor incident can result in a stampede in overcrowded places. We have seen in happening at football stadium, religious place of worship like Mecca....

We know there is a safe passenger load for all vehicles. What is the safe passenger load for the trains and has it been exceeded ?

It is as clear as daylight that our train stations and trains are under capacity to serve the exploding population. We know there is a limit to the increase frequency of train arrival without compromising safety. Besides even if they can do it, it will create another set of problem as the passagers cannot clear the platform and station in time before the arrival of the next train.

I have seen it happening even during off peak hours. Passengers were still crowding around the platform escalators to make their exit from the station and the next train arrived.

It is time SMRT CEO highlight this to the parliment that there is a need to start planning for an overhaul of the train infrastrature now. This is the least she can do as head of an organisation responsible for public transport.

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