Transport minister: LRT stations closed due to safety, now waiting for experts' report
KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 28 — Transport Minister Anthony Loke today called on Klang Valley commuters to be patient and wait for the expert report after the latest LRT service disruption that has forced the closure of two stations.
He said the Bandaraya and Masjid Jamek stations were shut down yesterday as a safety feature and would only be temporary.
“We wait for the report from experts and engineers to see how far the structure gives an impact from the aspect of safety, whether it is safe for us to resume operations, so we are still waiting for the report from the experts and engineers,” he told reporters when met at the Associated Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Malaysia’s Chinese New Year open house here.
Loke was asked how soon the problem would be resolved, but said he could not give a definite answer at the moment.
“Certainly when their report has been given, we will decide on how to mitigate and make further announcements, maybe in a day or two.
“Meanwhile, we give room for the engineers to see the strength of the structure. Most importantly, for us, we must prioritise safety. Although I understand when a station has to be closed, it is disruptive to many passengers, but I also hope passengers understand the situation is not that we want to close it, but because we must prioritise train safety and the safety of passengers, that is most important,” he said.
He also advised commuters on the Ampang LRT line to plan for alternative transport for next Monday at least.
He added that further information will be provided from time to time.
Yesterday, national news agency Bernama reported delays in the services of the Ampang LRT line, due to structural damage to the flyover in Bandaraya LRT station area which was reportedly believed to be caused by nearby construction works.
Rapid Rail Sdn Bhd yesterday said the Land Public Transport Agency's (APAD) preliminary investigation found that a development project close to the site had started without negotiations with APAD, which was required under the Railways (Railway Protection Zone) Regulations 1998.
Yesterday, Bernama reported delays in the services of the Ampang LRT line, due to structural damage to the flyover in Bandaraya LRT station area which was reportedly believed to be caused by nearby construction works. — Picture by Devan Manuel
Rapid Rail said investigation are still ongoing on the flyover's safety and structural integrity before any decision could be made to resume services.
The railway operator apologised for the inconvenience and announced free shuttle bus services as an alternative transport service for affected passengers.
In the latest update this morning on its official Facebook page, Rapid KL said the free shuttle bus services will operate at a frequency of between 10 to 15 minutes, with 10 buses on the LRT 9 route from Hang Tuah station to Bandaraya and nine buses on the LRT 10 route from the Masjid Jamek station to Bandaraya.
In light of expected increase in the number of passengers due to several events at the Bukit Jalil sports complex, Rapid KL owner Prasarana said the Bukit Jalil LRT station will be opened until 2am today as well as the operations at all other stations to enable passengers to reach their destinations, while a list of selected Rapid KL bus routes will also operate longer until 2.30am.