Common sense and courtesy needed in MTR carriages

PUBLISHED : Monday, 19 October, 2015, 5:16pm
UPDATED : Monday, 19 October, 2015, 5:16pm

Let's acknowledge that the MTR is the most efficient and best run mass transit system in the world.

Those who have travelled on train systems in other major cities, such as New York, London, Tokyo, Berlin and Paris, would surely agree with this.

The MTR is immaculately clean - trains and stations alike. The air conditioning never fails and the frequency of trains at all hours of service is second to none with delays barely recognisable. And it is one of the few things in Hong Kong that is cheap.

There is plenty of room on the MTR for cellos and other large items if only Hongkongers and the MTR demonstrated some common sense.

First, stop broadcasting useless messages throughout stations telling us how to use an escalator. Broadcast messages that encourage passengers to show some common sense and courtesy by taking off their bulky pack backs and oversized handbags before boarding, and placing them at their feet.

I estimate 40 plus per cent of passengers have a fully stuffed back pack with no regard for the extra space this takes up on a train, not to mention every time someone turns around and that back pack smacks you in the chest.

Second, have the MTR platform attendants and station announcers tell passengers, prior to boarding, to remove their stuffed back packs and bags and hold them down by their feet. Nobody would trip over them when exiting or entering a train as it is a simple matter of holding onto them and lifting them up slightly when the doors open - a simple matter of common sense and courtesy.

Third, MTR platform attendants should tell people to move into the centre of the train when boarding and when on the train.

There is always plenty of room in the middle of carriages as everyone is stuffed in by the doors.

On the train, messages should frequently remind passengers to move into the middle of the train, not about eating and drinking.

No, we are not going to stop people from being glued to their smartphones hunting for a Facebook photo of their friend's last meal, but there is room to make room by applying some common sense.

While I have never seen a cello on a train, I am sure they do travel once in a while.

Simon Constantinides, Kowloon Tong