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Monday, Jul 15, 2024

Device behind recent MTR disconnect last checked in 2018

Device behind recent MTR disconnect last checked in 2018

Energy absorption devices of couplers connecting train carriages, like the one involved in last week's MTR train incident, are put through routine maintenance checks once every nine years, with the last inspection conducted on the one in question being in 2018, officials of the railway operator said yesterday.
The mishap disrupted services during morning rush hours on December 5 between Tiu Keng Leng and Po Lam stations, and between Tiu Keng Leng and Lohas Park stations for about four hours, and forced 1,500 passengers to walk through the tunnel to the Tseung Kwan O station.

According to the rail operator's preliminary investigation, the malfunction was caused by a mechanical failure of the energy absorption device of the coupler connecting the sixth and seventh train cars.

At a railways subcommittee meeting yesterday, Deputy Secretary for Transport and Logistics Amy Wong Pui-man reminded the operator to submit an investigation report to the government - the rail operator's largest stakeholder - by February 4 detailing the causes of the incident, improvement measures taken and an implementation plan.

MTR Corp operations director Tony Lee Kar-yun said the device was last inspected in 2018, while the deputy director of the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department, Raymond Poon Kwok-ying, cited the rail operator's own regulations as saying that such devices are subject to routine checks every nine years.

Kitson Yang Wing-kit, who represents Kowloon central constituency in the Legislative Council, called on authorities to request the operator to take into consideration senior management's responsibilities on serious blunders when distributing performance-linked wages.

Secretary for Transport Lam Sai-hung made similar remarks in the wake of another incident last month when a train at Yau Ma Tei station came off the tracks, saying the operator's senior management may suffer pay and bonus cuts upon train mishaps.

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