• Sun
  • Aug 24, 2014
  • Updated: 12:16am


The MTR Corporation (its original full name was Mass Transit Railway Corporation) is listed on the Hong Kong Exchange and is a constituent of the benchmark Hang Seng Index. MTRC operates the Hong Kong underground rail system and is a major property developer and landlord in the city. It also invests in railways outside Hong Kong.

NewsHong Kong

MTR trains delayed after water pipe bursts

PUBLISHED : Monday, 30 June, 2014, 5:02pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 01 July, 2014, 3:08am

A burst water main disrupted services on the East Rail Line yesterday, prompting lengthy delays for hundreds of passengers just one day after the rail operator increased its fares.

The damaged pipe shot a jet of water some 20 metres into the air - high enough to hit the overhead electricity cables close to Fo Tan station and cause a power failure that disrupted services for almost two hours.

Services between Sha Tin and Tai Po Market were completely suspended for about an hour after the pipe burst shortly before 2.30pm. Limited services then resumed on that section of line using a single track for both directions. Waiting times were about 15 minutes. Delays also hit other sections of the line, with services from Tai Po Market to Lo Wu running at eight-minute intervals and between Tai Po Market to Lok Ma Chau at 25-minute intervals. Services from Hung Hom to Sha Tin ran every eight minutes.

"If I had any other more convenient transport choices, I wouldn't take the MTR," said Connie Chan, a 33-year-old clerk who was waiting at Fo Tan for a southbound train to Sha Tin. "It's just unacceptable to have services delayed just one day after the fare hike."

The MTR Corporation increased fares by an average of 3.6 per cent this week despite recording a net profit of HK$13 billion for the financial year.

The MTR, which is 76.5 per cent government-owned, has also come under fire after admitting that all five of its expansion projects have been delayed.

Yesterday, it put on free shuttle bus services between Tai Po Market and Sha Tin for the hundreds of passengers facing delays. But many complained of unclear instructions on where to line up, some saying they waited for more than half an hour before they could board a bus.

"I think I'm just lucky that I'm not late as I left home early, but I'm disappointed about the delay and the arrangements," said Susan Lau, a 64-year-old on her way to meet friends, as she waited for a shuttle bus at Fo Tan.

An MTR spokesman said the company had immediately sent repairmen to fix the overhead electricity cables. The spokesman said that the East Rail Line had resumed normal services by 4.17pm.

A spokesman for the Water Supplies Department said that the pipe - used for flushing water and 375mm in diameter - was thought to have been damaged by works at a nearby construction site. The department had immediately sent workers to repair the pipe, he added.



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This article is now closed to comments

I queued up for 20 minutes at Taipo station boarded a bus for Shatin at 3:20 arrived at Shatin at 4:50. We stopped at both University and Fotan where we were stuck in traffic jams. A trip from Taipo to TST that should have taken about 35 minutes took me 1 hour 45 minutes.
The MTR has had annual fare increases in line with service degradation. It is getting to a point where we can't rely on this form of transportation any longer.
Ms Chan, if your time is that precious that you can't wait 10 minutes, maybe you should take a cab to work, even better, buy a pollution emitting car and drive yourself to work.
This is exactly why the MTR system needs redundancy.
- connect East and West rail across the top of the New Territories
- build the North Island Line from Central to North Point
Failures of all sorts will occur, and having viable alternate transport options,
is now an essential component for a place the size of HK
[She had spent more than 10 minutes waiting for her train.]

[Television footage showed a long queue of commuters on a platform at Sha Tin waiting to board.]

[By Staff Reporter]

Yes, I would be too ashamed to put my name on this kind of abysmal journalism too.

What caused the bursting of the pipes?

Are those MTR water pipes, or general water pipes, responsibility of the Water Department?

Is there risk of more pipes bursting?

Have services now returned to normal? If not, when will they?

Did the MTR provide other means of transport?

If I am reading this now, should I try to avoid the East Rail Line still? Or is it fine now?

Is Fo Tan Station accessible at all?

In short: for crying out loud. If you really must report this kind of news, then DO IT RIGHT. Ask questions. Provide real useful information. Don't come to me with what was shown on TV and the irrelevant opinion of some random 33-year clerk named Connie Chan who waited 'more than 10 minutes.' Who gives a warthog's behind about Connie Chan waiting 'more than 10 minutes' and how she feels about it.

Final question.

Did they teach you anything, really anything at all in journalism school?

I don't think it's a requirement to become a journalist for the SCMP.
that clerk needs to realise the delay is not caused by the mtr.
The pipe burst happened on the walkway outside mtr premises.
Where are the grandstanding politicians condemning the MTR's performance?


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