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Trains' couplers failure to connect may have led to NEL evacuation in June

Early findings of probe into June 19 NEL evacuation may explain delay

Published on Jul 4, 2013 6:59 AM
Commuters taking pictures while walking on the tracks on June 19. They were stuck in a stalled train for an hour. -- ZAOBAO FILE PHOTO

The answer to why passengers were stranded on a broken-down train for an hour two weeks ago may lie in automatic couplers which join one train to another, according to preliminary findings of an investigation by SBS Transit.

The North East Line operator said a rescue train sent to push another train which had been stalled by a short circuit could not do so because the couplers failed to work.

It is believed to have been the first failure of its kind and it led to 250 passengers being stranded for about an hour on June 19.

For the coupling to work, one train merely has to approach another at a low speed to come into contact with it.

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