Photo: Paul Lee's post on TATA SMRT

Train service delay along NEL on Wednesday morning

Train service was disrupted for around two hours along the North East Line (NEL) this morning (11 Apr) due to train fault in Little India. This is the second train disruption this week. On Monday, train service was disruption along SMRT’s East West Line.

At 7:35am and 7:46am, transport operator SBS Transit posted tweets announcing this delay.

At 7:55am SBS Transit informed that there was no train service from Outram to Potong Pasir in both directions:

Commuters complained about the delay on Twitter while thinking the NEL service operator is the Singapore Mass Rapid Transport (SMRT):

At 8:03am, SBS Transit again tweeted about the NEL delay, asking for 30 minutes additional travel time; free bus services were still available from Outram Park to Potong Pasir stations:

Alan Charles Yap informed on TATA SMRT facebook group that NEL delay had been incremented to 30-45 minutes; and detailed the locations of the free bus:

Alan Charles Yap wrote:

NEL delay has been incremented to 30 ~ 45 mins.

Free BUS BRIDGING is activated between OTP & PTP.

On top of the free bus bridging, free bus rides are still available at designated bus stops along the affected stations of the NEL:

Currently the free bus rides are activated at:
NE3/EW16 Outram Park
NE4/DT19 Chinatown
NE5 Clarke Quay
NE6/CC1/NS24 Dhoby Ghaut
NE7/DT12 Little India
NE8 Farrer Park
NE9 Boon Keng
NE10 Potong Pasir

Look out for the blinking yellow light as shown in the sample photo. The yellow light serves to inform the bus captains to allow free boarding of regular bus services.

At 8:20am, SBS Transit asked again for 30 minutes additional travel time between Punggol and Habour Front:

At 8:38am and 8:53am, SBS Transit informed that NEL services has resumed but due to the remaining crowd at the stations asked for 15 more minutes of travel time:

Finally, at 8:19am SBS Transit tweeted that NEL was back to regular service and ceased free bus shuttle services.

However, many commuters complained on Straits Times’ report of the NEL delay, stating disappointments and other opinions:

Iris Teo: WTH!!! Where got FREE bus ride from affected stn!? We took bus from Punggol stn, bus driver said he was not aware of it so all commuters still need to pay for the fares!

Rachel Lim: The bridging bus ie free ride cannot be found @ bus stops in those affected mrt stn. Had to board another bus to alternative mrt stn eg EWL then reach Raffles Place. Anyway thr r too many ppl but not enuf bridging bus

Avinder Kaur: So if everytime the train breaks down and commuters have to resort to paying premium prices for taxis/grabs/ubers, it forces me to wonder how will we be compensated for this? Higher gst returns? Free rides?

Chong Kian Beng: Every time they raise fares, they said their cost went up. How about commuters? Our cost went up too. cost of going to work when trains broke down, cost of Healthcare, cost of sending kids to school, childcare and school buses. We don’t get pay rises just based on costs.

Zhao Jiaqi: No proper announcement in the train people just wait inside, they should keep announce and show sign at at mrt! DISAPPOINTED!

Jeslyn Ng: NEL information announcement is inaccurate. At 7.29am when I stepped in to the train, the first announcement I heard was “delay for 15min”. 10min later, 2nd announcement was still 15min. 8min later, 3rd announcement was still 15min. 4th announcement onward, can hardly hear what they announce. For god seek. I’m already in the train for more than 20min…

Luminin Lim: Then again their “Survey” will show above 90% satisfaction rate & overall KPI improvement with every need to increase fare… 😑 dying to see a real change in 2020..

Branden Chew: Fake news fake news, satisfaction at all level high according to some survey.

Joshua Matthew Ng: Can LTA/SBS announce properly which stations are affected? I saw notification only mentioned Little India. End up is between Potong Pasir and Outram Park! Central leh! I have never ever late to work like this!

Mark Shippo: When all the transport & news apps started to buzz at 7.30am, I kicked in my alternative transport plans and was on time. No choice but to have plan B as our train system have proven beyond reasonable doubt to be 100% breakdown prone & backup services to be 100% disorganised during breakdowns, despite regular repeated real-breakdown hands-on “rehearsals” to fine tune. When you cant depend on others, depend on yourself. Period.

Rachel Lim: The bridging bus ie free ride cannot be found @ bus stops in those affected mrt station. Had to board another bus to alternative mrt stn eg EWL then reach Raffles Place. Anyway thr r too many ppl but not enuf bridging bus