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'Traffic lights' at 10 more MRT stations

Published on Aug 23, 2014 7:49 AM
The peak-hour crowd heading into Tanjong Pagar MRT station after work as the amber light indicates a slightly crowded platform, meaning a possible wait of two trains. A trial of the system was conducted at Tanjong Pagar station in January. -- ST FILE PHOTO

More commuters will soon be able to tell, as they are walking into an MRT station, exactly how crowded train platforms are and if they need to skip a train.

SMRT is installing a "traffic light" system at 10 more stations by the first half of next year. The lights, fitted at the entrance to MRT stations, resemble traffic lights placed horizontally.

A green light indicates that a commuter can board the next train; an amber light points to a possible wait of two trains; a red light shows that the platform is very crowded and a prolonged wait is expected.

A flashing red light indicates that train services to that station have been disrupted or delayed.

SMRT declined to name the 10 new stations but said the stations have a "high passenger flow".

A trial of the lights was conducted at Ang Mo Kio station last December and at Tanjong Pagar station in January. In a survey of 1,000 commuters conducted by SMRT, 80 per cent said they were aware of the light system and said it should be introduced at more stations.

Only 60 per cent of these, however, said they usually refer to the lights before entering the station.

Commuters also gave feedback that the lights were too bright in underground conditions. SMRT will now install lights with reduced glare in underground stations to fix this problem.

The train operator will also be installing iDisplay screens at 15 more stations, adding to the current 17. These indicate if train services are operating normally across Singapore.