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SMRT collision is second incident in MRT's 30 year history

THE SMRT train collision on Wednesday morning, which saw 25 passengers injured, was the second such incident in the MRT's 30 year history.

In August 1993, a damaged rubber ring set off a chain of events that led to the collision between two trains at Clementi MRT station, leaving about 160 passengers injured. The ring broke, causing 50 litres of oil to drip onto the tracks from a locomotive doing maintenance during the non-passenger hours.

A Jurong East-bound train stopped at the station for two minutes longer than scheduled due to a technical fault. It was then hit by another train when the automatic train protection system failed.

Jammed train doors were forced open to help injured passengers out. Passengers were treated for head injuries, spinal injuries, fractures and minor bruises among other injuries.

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A panel of inquiry set up then to look into the incident said that the collision could have been prevented had MRT staff dealt with the oil spill "sufficiently aggressively or promptly". All hoses and oil seals on such locomotives were replaced as a result of the incident and new locomotives with a different type of engine which is not prone to oil leaks were also purchased.

In the latest incident, injured passengers suffered sprains, limb fractures and join dislocation.

SMRT will be holding a press conference about the incident at 6.30pm on Wednesday.

THE STRAITS TIMES

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