Joo Koon train accident: Second such incident in MRT's 30-year history

Twenty-three passengers and two staff were injured after an SMRT train hit a stationary train at Joo Koon MRT station.
Twenty-three passengers and two staff were injured after an SMRT train hit a stationary train at Joo Koon MRT station.ST PHOTO: JONATHAN CHOO

SINGAPORE - The SMRT train collision on Wednesday morning (Nov 15), which saw 25 people injured, was the second such incident in  MRT's 30-year history.

On Aug 5, 1993, a damaged rubber ring set off a chain of events that led to the collision between two trains at Clementi MRT station, leaving about 160 passengers injured.

The ring broke, causing 50 litres of oil to drip onto the tracks from a locomotive doing maintenance during non-passenger hours.

A Jurong East-bound train had stopped at the station for two minutes longer than scheduled due to a technical fault. It was then hit by another train when the automatic train protection system failed because of the spilt oil. 

Jammed train doors were forced open to help injured passengers out. Passengers were treated for head injuries, spinal injuries, fractures and minor bruises, among other injuries.

A panel of inquiry set up then to look into the incident said that the collision could have been prevented had MRT staff dealt with the oil spill "sufficiently aggressively or promptly".

The panel consisted of officials from the then-Public Works Department, Public Transport Council, Temasek Polytechnic and The Mass Rapid Transit Corporation (MRTC) - SMRT’s earlier incarnation

All hoses and oil seals on such locomotives were replaced as a result of the incident and new locomotives with a different type of engine which is not prone to oil leaks were also purchased.

More than 150 compensation claims were filed. 

In the latest incident, injured passengers suffered sprains, limb fractures and joint dislocation.

SMRT will be holding a press conference about the incident at 6.30pm on Wednesday.

 

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