In a combined press release by SMRT and LTA published on state media TodayOnline, the two confirms that commuters are being used as guinea pig test subjects for testing the new signalling system. SMRT and LTA made the audacious claim saying that they need higher loads to test their system and that they are gambling passenger time for the tests:
“To test our new communications-based train control signalling system, weekday trials cannot be avoided. Testing it under weekday conditions, when trains run more frequently and have higher passenger loads, gives us the opportunity to surface problems expeditiously.”
There is no explanation why the heavy loading tests could not be conducted off operation hours.
SMRT and LTA claimed that their “calibrated approach” take in mind of safety and impact on passengers. However there is no projection of massive economical losses for employees who were late for work from the train delays resulted.
The two ended their press release “seeking understanding and patience”, and did not give a deadline when the “tests” will end.
The new signalling system has so far seen 3 breakdowns in the 3 weeks since its inception last month (May 26).
Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan has gone into hiding to protect his political reputation and re-directed all media communications to the Land Transport Authority.