Lifts to be installed at KTM stations


THE Transport Ministry has confirmed that talks are currently ongoing to instal lifts at KTM stations to accommodate the needs of the elderly, pregnant women and people with disabilities to use public transport as a mode of transportation.


Transport Minister Anthony Loke said this following his one-day working trip to Penang yesterday (March 1).


Loke, who landed at the Penang International Airport yesterday morning, used several modes of public transport, such as the public bus, ferry and train to monitor the operations, as well as to engage with the public on their thoughts about the services.


Just before he took off in the Electric Train Service (ETS) to head back to Kuala Lumpur from the Bukit Mertajam train station, Loke held a brief press conference at the station, where spoke about the plans to instal lifts at KTM stations.


He said his ministry was well aware of stations in the northern region that require expansion or upgrading works to cater to the growing number of passengers.


“If we want more people to use public transport, we need to improve the service.


“As for congestion at the stations, this only happens during peak hours.


“Meanwhile, we do have plans to upgrade and expand stations that need to be, but this will take some time as we will require the assistance of the Railway Assets Corporation,” Loke told the reporters at the Bukit Mertajam train station on March 1.


On the increased train frequency for the Northern Sector KTM Commuter trips, which was implemented on Feb 18, Loke said there has been a rise in the number of passengers from 10,480 people daily to 11,224, which is a seven per cent increase.


According to Loke, this initiative has helped passengers in the northern sector and the surrounding areas to arrive home up to one hour earlier.


Loke (centre) speaking to reporters during the press conference.


“As for passengers using the Padang Besar – Butterworth commuter, the timetable has been improved as they no longer have to wait 60 minutes but just 20 minutes for each train to arrive during the morning peak hour.


“Meanwhile, the waiting period during the evening peak hour has been improved from 60 minutes to 30 minutes.


“The Padang Rengas – Butterworth – Padang Rengas route will increase in frequency to 120 minutes during off-peak hours compared to 180 minutes in the past,” Loke added.


At present, the number of trips for the Padang Besar – Butterworth – Padang Besar route has been increased from 26 to 36 trips, while the Padang Rengas – Butterworth – Padang Rengas route has been increased from 12 to 16 trips daily.


Also present during the press conference was state Transport and Infrastructure Committee chairman Zairil Khir Johari.


Story by Kevin Vimal
Pix by Muhamad Amir Irsyad Omar