Little boy hurt by closing MRT fare gate in Singapore!
A little boy got hurt on July 16, when the fare gates at Hougang MRT closed in on him suddenly. Read more...
A Facebook post has drawn attention to the dangers of closing fare gates at MRT stations, especially when little children are involved.
Toddler hurt by closing fare gate
A little boy got hurt on July 16, when the fare gates at Hougang MRT closed in on him suddenly. His aunt, Kelly Ng, recently took to Facebook to share the incident.
Kelly writes, “My Sister called me urgently at 8:53 pm. My 3+ years old nephew was injured by the MRT gantry gates. After he tapped his EZ link card and was about to walk through the gates, the gates closed up on him very fast.”
She next complains that in spite of her sister informing the MRT staff present, they did not come out to assist. They apparently, “sat there to watch and did nothing.”
Finally, “Out of exasperation and seeing there is no assistance going to be rendered, my Sister opened the side gate to get to my Nephew fast to check on his injury. He complained about pain on his chest and stomach, and perhaps on his shoulder too. The MRT staffs called ambulance.”
Kelly managed to reach the scene quickly to find her “nephew sitting on a chair, looking scared, shocked and in pain.”
The family was disappointed with the way the MRT staff handled the whole situation, “The main grouse from my Sister is the two staffs did not try to assist or come out from their seat to even take a look at my Nephew who has been injured by the gates.”
“They even tried to record my Sister’s conversation with them. This kind of service standard is totally unacceptable. No matter what they were doing at that point in time, after they were informed, shouldn’t they just come out to check on a child who could possibly be injured when the gates closed on him unexpectedly? They were given enough response time but they did nothing.”
The child was taken to KK hospital for further examination on his injuries, and discharged soon by the hospital and advised to monitor for any worsening conditions.
SBS Transit Responds
According to Channel NewsAsia, SBS Transit’s senior vice president of corporate communications Tammy Tan, has expressed her regret about the incident.
Apparently, SBS Transit has since then, investigated the incident with the help of CCTV footage. It seems, the mishap occurred not due to the malfunctioning of the gantry gates. Ms. Tan has been quoted by Channel NewsAsia as saying, “From the footage, we note that the mother, who was pushing a stroller, had tapped in first, followed by the child and then the father, Mr Lim.”
She clarifies, “As Mrs Lim was making her way through the fare gate, there was a distance between her and the stroller causing the system to recognise this as entry by two separate entities. The stroller passed through the fare gate on the mother’s card while the mother did so on the child’s card. Therefore, when the child proceeded forward, the flaps of the fare gates closed on him as the system had detected an intrusion. There was no malfunction in the fare gate.”
However, she acknowledges that the staff should have been more proactive about helping the child and family in distress. She tells Channel NewsAsia, “Our staff should have come out from their office to see if the child was hurt and required medical attention.”
She also apologises to the family, “We could have handled this better and do apologise for any distress caused. We will take the necessary actions to do better … We wish Mr Lim’s son a speedy recovery.”
We hope this little boy is feeling much better now. It is always a challenge for parents with little children to get past the MRT fare gates. It is best to:
- Always go through the wide, wheelchair-friendly gate which has sufficient room for mummy and child/stroller and also closes in a lot less faster.
- Children below 7 enjoy free travel on Singapore public transport. However, children above 0.9 m can apply for their own Child Concession cards. That way, the child can tap his own card to get past the gate. Again, perhaps, it is better to let the child go in front of you so that you can see what’s happening.
- Avoid tailgating, the gate can close in suddenly and cause injuries.
(Source: Channel NewsAsia)