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    Nov 13, 2015

    SMRT launches centre to reduce response time in disruptions

    TOP train experts will get into a huddle in future to sort out rail disruptions.

    Train operator SMRT has launched an integrated maintenance operations centre (MOC) to coordinate its recovery efforts in the event of disruptions and reduce response times by about 30 per cent.

    It has grouped 35 of its best engineers and rail experts at its centre in Bishan Depot and will pump in some $5 million over the next few years, the company said yesterday.

    Before the centre was set up in August, its experts were distributed through the network, said SMRT chief executive Desmond Kuek. The new centre will improve both the timeliness and quality of emergency maintenance response, he added.

    The centre allows engineers to monitor train movements, staff deployment and receives a real-time video feed from ground staff.

    Lee Ling Wee, managing director of SMRT Trains, said: "With the MOC, engineering staff in the field are better networked and are provided with timely support when resolving complex, technical issues on the ground."

    The centre currently monitors only the East-West and North-South Lines, but will soon monitor the Circle Line as well.

    National University of Singapore transport researcher Lee Der Horng said the latest centre was a positive development.

    "With everything under the same roof, there will be better coordination. During breakdown and emergencies, timely coordination between parties is very important," said Prof Lee.