Loke urges commuters to remain patient on Ampang LRT issues

THE Ampang Light Rail Transit (LRT) line is experiencing some unexpected problems, and the Transport Ministry (MOT) is still waiting to hear from experts and engineers to determine the extent of the structural damage and the impact on security.

The Bandaraya LRT station suffered structural damages yesterday (Jan 27), prompting Rapid KL to block access to the line between Masjid Jamek and Bandaraya stations for safety reasons.

Trains from both directions were turned back to where they came from, and shuttle buses were provided to ferry passengers across that small gap.

Rapid KL said the issue stems from a “kinked” track near the Bandaraya station.

Early observations show that it’s due to structural damage to an overpass in the area, believed to be caused by nearby ongoing construction.

Transport Minister Anthony Loke Siew Fook today said the ministry is still waiting for the report from experts.

“We are still waiting for a report from the experts to find out if it is safe for us to operate again.

“Meanwhile, we give space to the engineers to see the strength of the structure; the most important thing is that we must prioritise safety,” he told reporters.

When asked by reporters about the expected reopening of the Ampang LRT line, Loke said he could not guarantee a specific period.

“Of course, when the report is given, we will make a decision on how to deal with it, and further announcements will probably be made in a day or two.”

He spoke to the media while accompanying the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, to the Chinese New Year Open House of the Malaysian Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCCIM) at Wisma Chinese Chamber today.

The Ampang LRT line became the latest to fall under the scrutiny of netizens. While the line has always been reliable in stark comparison to the Kelana Jaya LRT line, this came as a shock to many who did not expect this to happen on this particular route.

The line has been in operation for over 25 years. Netizens asked Rapid KL’s Twitter account how long it would take for them to fix the problem. The reply stated that it will take them quite some time to rectify the issue and that users will be updated via social media.

However, netizens are praising Rapid KL for detecting the problem early, as it would’ve been a bigger problem if it was left undetected.

Speculations are that a nearby construction zone was one of the causes of the crack in the train track’s structure.

“I understand that it causes inconvenience to many passengers, but I also hope that passengers understand that this situation is not something we want to cover up.

“We need to prioritise the safety of trains and passengers, that is most important,” added Loke. — Jan 28, 2023

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