Source: Channel NewsAsia video screengrab.

“It’s an awful day.”, Khaw Boon Wan on the MRT collision at Joo Koon station

Minister for Transport Khaw Boon Wan delivered an apology to commuters who were affected by the collision between two trains incident which took place at Joo Koon Station on Wednesday (15 November) morning in which 29 people were injured.

Mr Khaw was speaking to reporters after a joint press conference in which the Land Transport Authority (LTA) and SMRT sought to explain its preliminary findings on the contact between two trains, saying that he was as upset as commuters.

He said, “It’s an awful day.”

“Commuters were inconvenienced and some were even injured. So we are deeply sorry for that. Those who were injured and are in hospitals, the Second Minister (for Transport), Ng Chee Meng as well as Senior Minister of State for Transport, Dr Lam (Pin Min) visited all of them,” the Minister stated.

“They have been most understanding and we are deeply grateful,” he added.

Mr Khaw said that the forming of a Committee of Inquiry to get to the bottom of the incident could be determined as the investigation progresses, adding that if the facts surrounding the incident are clear, there would be no need to have one.

The Minister stated that he has advised SMRT and LTA to suspend train service from Joo Koon to Tuas Link on Thursday, for system provider Thales to conduct a thorough check.

He said, “This is the first major incident involving the new signalling system.”

“Thales is confident of the system and I advised the team, ‘lets play doubly safe’- safety is involved. That’s why I advised them to suspend the Tuas West Extension (operations) tomorrow (Thursday). Then we have a whole day to do a thorough check before we resume the Tuas West extension,” he ended.