Confusion, breakdowns mar Dubai Metro debut

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    The Dubai Metro got off to a rocky start on its debut weekend as confusion over opening times and technical problems had staff struggling to cope with overcrowding at stations, UAE newspapers reported on Saturday.

    Curious residents descended on stations across Dubai on Friday, the first day that much of the city’s population had to ride the trains after the metro opened to the public on Thursday, the newspapers reported.

    But excitement soon turned to anxiety and then to anger as passengers turned up in the droves in the morning to find stations closed, unaware services on Friday do not start until 2 p.m., the papers said.

    Once trains did start running breakdowns left thousands either stranded at stations or trapped on trains for more than an hour, the papers reported.

    Metro staff were forced to temporarily close stations and suspend services Friday evening due to the problems, the papers said.

    The service was extended until 2 a.m. from midnight so stranded passengers could get home, the papers added.