KUALA LUMPUR: The Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) is not satisfied with the testing done on the new electric train sets (ETS) acquired by KTM Bhd to ply the Ipoh-Padang Besar route.
This is despite KTMB having said that it was ready to roll out the service for this popular route by today if SPAD gave the go-ahead.
In a statement, SPAD said while KTMB had submitted a proposal to start the service that would run on freshly-laid double tracks, it was still working with the rail service provider “to guarantee the level of safety and comfort for passengers”.
SPAD said it had conducted rail inspections for the Ipoh-Padang Besar and the Seremban-Gemas double tracks to identify safety issues such as checking rail conditions, signalling, stations and the condition of the rolling stock or train sets.
“Even though the Ipoh-Padang Besar and Seremban-Gemas sectors have been completed for full operations, SPAD’s observations show that the new train sets have yet to fully comply with the conditions.
“We recommend that KTMB use the current ETS train sets for the operation of these sectors,” it said.
However, KTMB has barely enough ETS sets to service the existing Seremban to Ipoh route.
On KTMB’s proposal to provide partial services to the east coast by resuming operations along the Gemas to Gua Musang, Kelantan stretch, as well as from Kemubu to Krai in Kelantan, SPAD said while it recognised the need to provide public transport in time for Hari Raya, safety could not be compromised.
“Since the East Coast alignment was badly affected by the floods last year, the tracks, inclines and stations involved are not safe for use, especially at stretches where wooden sleepers are used.”
Full repair work for the entire corridor affected by last year’s floods would be carried out by contractors appointed by the Transport Ministry and are expected to be completed by 2017.
“KTMB has yet to verify that the repair works have been completed.
“The final decision on resuming rail services for the sectors mentioned will be determined after KTMB meets all requirements,” said SPAD.
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