Chaos ensued today (Aug 30) at the North South Line (NSL) stations, and, as of press time Singapore 8am, now experiencing serious congestion due to an earlier train fault at 6am. Trains are travelling at speed as slow as 20km/h between Yew Tee station and Jurong East interchange. Commuters are posting on social media confirming that travelling time has been extended by as much as 30 minutes, as compared to the official announcement of 20 minutes. A Facebook commentator, Ng Chien Ming, said he took 1 hour and 10 minute to get from Woodlands from Jurong East.
This is the second major train breakdown following yesterday’s signalling fault at the Circle Line, and embarrassingly, a day after Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan suggest raising fares. The estimated economic losses from these unproductive hours amount to a few million S$ for every hour of train delay.
Although the government set a target of 6.9 million population, Singapore’s infrastructures is buckling under a 5.5 million population with the public train system breaking down as frequently as once every week. Also in the past week, two foreigner teachers (one from China) with active Tuberculous passed the deadly disease to local preschoolers in Singapore. 41 victims, excluding another 15 new victims announced today, were announced to be diagnosed with the Zika virus – with most victims being foreigner construction workers living in shabbily congregated live quarters.
Cities with similar or even higher population intensity and similar Asian demographics like Taipei, Hong Kong and Tokyo do not face the same problems as Singapore does. Their train system are lauded for being the most reliable and fastest in the world, and the health and sanitation of these cities are first-world as compared to Singapore’s. This highlights a sheer disconnect in competency of the city councilors in these cities and, in Singapore’s case, the ruling party PAP government.
The recent government cover ups of the Zika virus, Tuberculous and Hepatitis C virus outbreak further highlighted the consequences of Singaporeans’ irresponsible voting, which went to the ruling party PAP by 70% in last year’s General Election.