SINGAPORE - The Land Transport Authority (LTA), SMRT and SBS Transit conducted a ground deployment exercise on Wednesday morning to test their enhanced incident management plans for large-scale train service disruptions.
The exercise simulated multiple power trips on the East-West Line (EWL) during the morning peak hours, which resulted in the suspension of train operations along the entire line. Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan attended the exercise which started at 9.30am.
The emergency drill, codenamed "Exercise Greyhound", is part of a series of regular exercises conducted.
The exercise was conducted while regular train services operated as normal and commuters were unaffected.
The operators also tested additional measures to improve the capacity of alternative transport options and information dissemination. This included regular trunk services that ply the rail corridor and special shuttle bus services.
These special services are activated in the event of multiple line-wide service disruptions, and will bring commuters from the major towns in the northern, western and eastern parts of Singapore to the key interchange stations and vice versa.
During the exercise, the LTA also trailed the newly installed beacon lights at Tiong Bahru station. When activated, these lights signal to bus captains and commuters that free bus services were activated.
Called "Exercise Greyhound", LTA also said it used the exercise to review operators' preparedness in the four areas: activation of free boarding on regular bus services; activation of special shuttle buses from key MRT interchanges to the heartlands; activation of the operators' staff as Crisis Support Team (by SMRT) or Goodwill Ambassadors (by SBS Transit) to manage the surge in commuters; and availability of leaflets at SMRT stations to guide commuters.
The "breakdown" was enacted at Buona Vista, Outram Park and Tiong Bahru, operators were also tested on their public communications efforts to inform the public at unaffected rail lines - Circle Line, Downtown Line and North East Line.
LTA's chief executive, Chew Men Leong said: " Today's exercise has been very productive in showing us what is working well and where we will continue to strengthen our incident management processes. For example, we have identified more ways to get information out faster at stations and this will be a main action item."