Commuters bashed transport operator SMRT in the comments section of its Facebook page, sharing their experience during the journey on the shuttle bus service provided for the full-day closure of 17 stations along the North-South (NSL) and East-West Lines (EWL) on Sunday (10 December).
SMRT had earlier announced that 17 MRT stations on East-West Line (EWL) and two MRT stations on North-South Line (NSL) will be fully closed on 10 and 17 Dec (Both Sundays) to allow for extended engineering hours.
Other than the closure, the 17 MRT stations from Tiong Bahru to Tuas Link along EWL and the two stations on NSL, Bukit Batok and Bukit Gombak will close earlier on Friday and Saturday at 11pm and open later on Saturdays and Sundays at 8am from 8 December to 31 December.
SMRT stated that some of the corrective maintenance work being carried out include replacing track circuits, cleaning of station lighting and jet fans, and replacing rollers and belts of half-height platform screen doors.
Many of the passengers who used the shuttle bus service described their experience as being horrible.
Lan Dan Teo wrote, "SMRT shuttle bus management is a failure max. causes super jam traffic. 1.5 hours also cannot get the shuttle bus to reach from CCK to JE. Please know that there also shift workers working on weekend."
Iris Tan wrote, "Just back from JE. Terrible traffic jam. Saw staff drenched and still trying to shelter commuters from bus, some have not taken their dinner. Management, please, do something."
Vladyslava Korniyenko wrote, "Poor people stuck in these awful fully packed shuttle buses. Luckily we decided to take a taxi when we saw the number of people they were trying to squeeze into these shuttles at Buona Vista."
Lee Hsienming wrote, "It took more than an hour from Chua Chu Kang to Jurong east, until now still stuck outside the station, what’s SMRT doing?"
Vincent Chuang Geng An wrote, "Please utilise this time frame to ensure that the work is not wasted. Bus drivers and station attendants are just doing their jobs but surely things can be better planned from above than squeezing all the buses on one route?"
Ming Xi wrote, "It would be better to let passengers alight earlier if there is a jam at major interchanges for shuttle buses eg Jurong East. This would alleviate the situation of jamming through roads leading to the interchange and allow passengers to get out to take alternative routes after they are sufficiently near Jurong East. Buses have typically taken a long roundabout to go into the interchange just to get passengers down and it is counter effective. We would love to see some flexibility here."
Tom Oh wrote, "Today I took bus from Pioneer MRT bus stop to Boon Lay MRT bus stop to change Express 5 to Outram Park. I get down at Boon Lay and the Marshall said no more bus service for Express 5. Pioneer MRT sin did put up signage and also the bus stop but without telling commuters the first bus or last bus. Boon Lay MRT bus stop got put but when reached Boon Lay bus stop, it was too late already."
Khoo Huixiang wrote, "The system of shuttle buses is a failure. Too many buses turning into Jurong East interchange causing a huge bottleneck.
Maybe it'll be better to not even have shuttle buses at all, and let Singaporeans take normal buses instead.
Buses will be packed, but at least the roads won't be clogged."
K S Ong wrote, "Huge bottle neck from Outram to JE. Bus queuing all the way near Big Box Snaking past JEM to CPF board and finally into JE interchange. Looks like 1 km queue."
Eric Wong wrote that the jam were even worse than the ones he had experienced in many other countries, including Jakarta and Manila.
He wrote, "Do you all at SMRT knows what is happening to all those People / Citizens / Commuters going to Jurong East from Outram Park taking your Free Shuttle Bus ?
Now? Many are caught in the rain ( Countless ) because the whole blady Road is Jam- Up - it’s raining ( not flooding )
But so many buses all Jam up- worst than JAKARTA, Manila kind of Jam I have been
Terrible - you guys screw up big time lousy planning
PS- I don’t know how far true 2 Malay lady says she waited for a bus to go back to Bukit Batok from 6pm then only till 8.29pm did she manage to get on bus number 990.
Note:- and the Queue At Jurong East waiting for shuttle bus going back to Outram - it’s sooooo longggggggg - terrible"
Some questioned that after all the troubles that the passengers had to face, they still had to pay for the poor service.
Gladys Ann Dimaguila wrote, "3.5 hour travel time from Bras Basah to Pioneer. So exhausting. I suggest the shuttle bus should be free of charge to compensate at least for the inconvenience."
Muhammad Bin Abdul Jalil wrote, "Still gotta pay for lousy and slow shuttle service. Biar betul. Shameless elites."
Some also noted that despite the fact that the operator had spent all day to allow maintenance along the line, there were some delays occurred this morning.
SayPo Yeo wrote, "So why are trains stopping 2-3 minutes at each station this morning on the EWL? Shouldn't there be improvement instead of more delays?"
Kazuki Akira wrote, "Despite all this, train stuck at kranji for more than 10 mins without announcements today morning
Freaking 6.08 am to 6.20 am."