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Other major train breakdowns in Singapore

SINGAPORE – A power fault shut down train service on parts of the North-South and East-West MRT Lines at around 7pm on Wednesday (Oct 14), severely disrupting the evening rush-hour commute for many commuters. At 7.30pm, the fault disrupted service along a 16-station stretch of the Circle Line. Preliminary investigations indicate that a faulty power cable had caused the breakdown, which is one of the most serious power-related incidents to hit the MRT network in recent years. Here are some other serious breakdowns:

Dec 15 and 17, 2011

A sagging power-supply rail brings the North-South Line to a standstill on the evening of Dec 15, and then again on the morning of Dec 17, as SMRT fails to detect and rectify the damage completely.

July 7, 2015

A power-supply trip causes both the North-South and East-West lines to fail, affecting about half a million commuters.

The Land Transport Authority later blames a salt-caked insulator near Tanjong Pagar station, but is unable to replicate the fault.

April 25, 2016

A power trip at one of the network’s substations causes the western sector of the North-South and East-West lines, parts of the Circle Line, as well as the Bukit Panjang LRT system to fail. The trip is suspected to have been triggered by cable works on the East-West Line’s Tuas West Extension. 

June 28, 2017

The entire North-South Line ceases to operate just after 5pm due to a fault on a newly-installed signalling system. The same fault also affected service on the East-West Line Tuas West Extension. About 10 minutes later, SMRT was able to get the train moving again but at lower speeds.

SMRT and the Land Transport Authority (LTA) had said similar disruptions may persist for “a few more months”.

The pair attributed the latest twin faults to “a signalling fault on the new communication-based train control (CBTC) system”.


The entire North-South Line ceased to operate just after 5pm due to a fault on a newly-installed signalling system on June 28, 2017. PHOTO: ST FILE

July 12, 2017

A power fault causes train services on the North-Line and East West line to fail late at night. In a tweet just after midnight on July 12, SMRT said that there were no train services between Jurong East and Kranji on the North-South Line, as well as between Tuas Link and Queenstown on the East-West Line. SMRT tweeted at 1.20am that train and bridging bus services have ended and that their engineers are still working to rectify the fault.

More on this topic

Aug 17, 2017

A new signalling system fault near Ang Mo Kio causes two hour delays during peak hour on Thursday evening. Commuters were asked to disembark from at least one train at Toa Payoh station.


A fault in a track point disrupted rush-hour services on the East-West Line on Sep 19, 2018. PHOTO: ST FILE

Sept 19, 2018

A fault in a track point disrupted rush-hour services on the East-West Line on Sep 19, causing thousands of MRT commuters to face delays of up to 40 minutes during rush hour service. The glitch occurred between the Jurong East and Clementi MRT stations.

Oct 9, 2019

The North-East Line (NEL) service was delayed by about 20 minutes at one point due to a signalling fault at Sengkang Station. SBS Transit tweeted at 7.50pm that the service on NEL was delayed and commuters could expect an additional travel time of about 10 minutes before introducing amending it several times. Commuters were stuck in trains for more than 15 minutes.

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