KTM Update: Delays for up to 1 week for KTM Komuter? (Update #1)

Update: A wire story from Bernama suggests that services are expected to resume soon but no clear details are given!

TRANSIT noted yesterday that there was a disruption of KTM services caused by two incidents.

First a cargo train derailed between Kuala Lumpur station and Bank Negara station on Monday, severely disrupting services.

image of a derailed freight train between Kuala Lumpur and Bank Negara stations - courtesy of Zaizul Azizi Zaman

Derailed cargo train disrupts KTM Commuter services (Malay Mail)
Monday, June 7th, 2010

KUALA LUMPUR: KTM Commuter services in the city were disrupted this morning when a cargo train on its way to Ipoh from Port Klang, derailed near Bank Negara here.

According to KTM’s acting Corporate Communications manager Mohd Fazli Ismail when contacted, services are expected to resume by 2pm, once clearing works on the track are completed.

The incident was reported at 12.50am and no casualties were reported while investigations to find out the cause of the derailment was underway, he said.

A statement from KTM Bhd said KTM Intercity services and the Kuala Lumpur-Ipoh-Kuala Lumpur shuttle service would also be affected.

For more information and details, passengers are advised to contact KTM Berhad’s customer service at 1-300-88-5682.

In the second incident, a power shutdown at the Port Klang junction meant that EMU trains could not enter KL Sentral. KTM Komuter responded by cutting back services on the Port Klang-Sentul line at Angkasapuri, and introducing shuttle trains.

At this time, the power shutdown has been resolved, but the rectification works and repairs at the site of the derailment will take a few more days to complete.

Trains run but with delays (NST)
8 June 2010

Commuters disembark from the train that had stopped at the Mid Valley station. Image courtesy of NST

[TRANSIT: Note from the above photo that passengers are crossing the tracks in an unsafe manner and that there should be more KTMB personnel on the ground directing the passengers to walk in a safe manner.]

KUALA LUMPUR: Those using the KTM Komuter service should expect a 30-minute delay on all routes this week.

KTM Bhd corporate communications unit issued a statement to say that the disruption in its services, caused by a derailed cargo train near Bank Negara, was expected to last for at least a few more days.

The good news is operations at all stations, resumed yesterday at 3.30pm, including Sentul station, which was closed following Sunday’s midnight incident.

“Komuter services for all routes have resumed but there will be a delay as only one track is used because repair works between Kuala Lumpur and Bank Negara are still in progress.

“The two containers which are still at the site will be removed tonight (yesterday).

“We apologise for any inconvenience caused,” the statement read.

Yesterday, hundreds of commuters were stranded near the Mid Valley station when the train stopped during the morning rush hour. The train is believed to have run into technical problems. Further information was not available at press time.

During Sunday’s midnight incident, a cargo train on its way to Ipoh from Port Klang, derailed near Bank Negara.

Three of the five cargo containers involved in the derailment were removed on Monday night.

“Work on the site has been progressing well. Apart from the track and fallen containers, damaged electric cables will also have to be replaced or repaired,” said the statement.

TRANSIT Says:

TRANSIT was surprised to learn of the first and second incidents that disrupted KTM Komuter services and other train services yesterday.

The derailment of the freight train between Kuala Lumpur station and Bank Negara is a clear reminder that our railway infrastructure needs immediate expansion.

The proposed Alor Gajah-Port Klang-Batu Gajah rail corridor, which would allow freight trains to bypass the mainline corridor in Kuala Lumpur, is now looking more and more important – and we hope that the government will invest in this project as part of the 10th Malaysia Plan.

We are also concerned with KTMB personnel’s response during the incidents. There were no updates on the @ktmkomuter twitter feed upon 15 minutes*, as expected by TRANSIT. KTM Komuter did post clear and detailed updates later on but they have to get to that standard of 15 minutes.

*The 15 minute standard for twitter updates has become a de facto protocol for communication of information during delays on public transport.

Second, as you can see from the image above, there did not appear to be clear direction from KTMB personnel on the ground so that passengers who exited the train were given clear instructions on where to walk. This may seem like a minor detail, but paying attention to these minor details is what makes for good service.

The Malay Mail has also covered the disruption to KTM Komuter services in their evening edition Wednesday, including complaints and expressions of anger from KTM Komuter passengers.

TRANSIT hopes that KTMB will continue to train (no pun intended) their personnel and give them the resources they need to properly respond to service disruptions, whether major or minor ones.

We understand that many customers are angry and frustrated by these regular disruptions to service and lack of improvements to customer service.

We invite public transport users to give us feedback on the problems experienced during the recent disruptions, by commenting in the space below or sending us an email at klangvalley.transit@gmail.com.

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