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July 12, 2011

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Home » Metro » Public Services

Move to tackle crush concerns

THE interval between trains on Metro Line 1 was extended due to safety concerns during evening rush hour yesterday, after escalators were taken out of service for inspections.

City Metro operator says longer intervals will mean fewer passengers arriving on platforms at once, easing congestion.

Usually, it takes about eight minutes for a train to empty of passengers and for them to leave, but the original interval time between stations was three minutes, officials said.

With escalators, this volume of passengers is manageable, but as slow-moving crowds rely on stairs to get out of the station, officials fear crushes.

Some 22 escalators manufactured by the OTIS Elevator (China) Co. were shut down in six stations on Metro Line 1 and Line 7 after the city launched an inspection of a specific model involved in fatal accident in Beijing last week.

The sudden closure of escalators has meant a struggle for passengers up and down stairs. During yesterday morning rush hour, a female passenger fainted at Xinzhuang Station due to the bustling crowd.

At Shanghai South Railway Station, passengers carrying heavy luggage were out of breath when they finally made their way out.

"I was shocked when I saw so many people in the station and at having to climb so many steps," said a woman carrying a large suitcase.

Some mothers called guards to help lift baby buggies.

Many passengers complained they would be late for work and hoped that the escalators would be back in action soon.

But Metro officials said that there is no timetable for the service being resumed.


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