Rail repair, maintenance: SMRT replies

We refer to the letters by Dr Ho Ting Fei ("S'pore must learn from Hong Kong's rail operator") and Mr Aaron Ang Chin Guan ("People make all the difference"; both published on Wednesday).

SMRT Group's rail maintenance-related expenditure accounted for 41 per cent to 45 per cent of its rail revenue over the last four quarters (Oct 1, 2014 to Sept 30, 2015).

In other words, almost half of every dollar we collect for rail revenue goes to rail maintenance-related expenditure. This refers to rail maintenance staff costs, depreciation of rail assets and other rail maintenance-related operating expenses.

To strengthen our repair and maintenance capability, we have also substantially reinforced our engineering workforce.

Over the last three years, SMRT has grown the number of rail maintenance staff by nearly a quarter (23 per cent). For executive rail engineers alone, the numbers have grown by 70 per cent.

By 2018, SMRT aims to have more than 400 engineers (a 127 per cent increase from 2011) and more than 2,600 technicians (a 50 per cent jump from 2011).

This will complement the enlarged train fleet and help keep our rail lines running smoothly.

SMRT is fully committed to strengthening the level of service and rail reliability, and to meeting the network's higher capacity needs and operational requirements.

Lee Ling Wee
Managing Director SMRT Trains

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 30, 2015, with the headline 'Rail repair, maintenance: SMRT replies'. Subscribe