KTM Berhad (KTMB) has launched its Komuter train service in the northern region.
The daily Komuter Utara service links Kamunting in Perak and Gurun in Kedah, a distance of 144km which will take the electric train about two hours to travel.
KTMB president Lt Col (R) Sarbini Tijan said the air-conditioned shuttle service would stop at Bagan Serai, Parit Buntar, Nibong Tebal, Simpang Ampat, Bukit Mertajam, Bukit Tengah, Butterworth, Tasek Gelugor and Sungai Petani along the route.
“There will be 14 services a day, seven in each direction. For a start, the service is available at three-hour intervals,” he told a press conference when announcing the launching of the service at the Bukit Mertajam station yesterday.
Also present were KTMB general manager (commuter services) Azshidah Shah Shahari and northern regional manager Rasul Yahaya.
Sarbini said two three-carriage Electric Multiple Unit (EMU) trains would be used while another would be on standby as a backup.
Each train has a seating capacity of 185 and standing space for another 290 passengers.
Sarbini said that if all goes well and support is good, KTMB would increase the service in stages before Chinese New Year next year.
He said Komuter Utara would complement the existing Electric Train Service (ETS) which carries some 2,000 passengers daily within the northern region.
Factory worker Muhamad Zamri Md Isa, 41, was among the first passengers who used the service yesterday.
He travelled from his hometown in Tasek Gelugor to Butterworth.
“I'm on leave and heard about the new train service, so I decided to try it out. It takes 45 minutes from my house to Butterworth by motorcycle. The train is able to cover the journey in 20 minutes.
“It’s not only more convenient but also less risky than travelling on my motorcycle," said Zamri who was accompanied by his wife Noor Fazilah Mold Zulkifli, 30.
Tickets for Komuter Utara are priced from RM1 to RM10.50 for adults. Senior citizens aged 60 and above, the disabled and children aged four to 12 get 50% off the fare.
The first train from Gurun leaves at 5.16am and the last train at 10.45pm, while the first train from Kamunting leaves at 5.25am and the last at 11.37pm.
For more information on ticket prices and schedules, visit www.ktmb.com.my or call 1300 88 5862.