Signalling issues force closure of some Dubai Metro stations

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By Ashfaq Ahmed, Chief Reporter  www.gulfnews.com 

Dubai: Hundreds of passengers were stranded for hours at some of the Dubai Metro stations as the train operation remained partially suspended due to technical hiccups during the weekend peak hours.

    *  Commuters wait outside the Burj Khalifa Metro Station during a disruption in the service yesterday.
* Commuters wait outside the Burj Khalifa Metro Station during a disruption in the service yesterday.

Train operations remained suspended on the major part of the Red Line due to signalling problem at one of the newly opened stations – Ibn Battuta. “Due to signaling issues, we curtailed the train operation between Al Rashidiya and Burj Khalifa Station and deployed buses to carry passengers to other stations,” said Pehyman Younes Parham, Director of Marketing and Communication of the Dubai Roads and Transport Authority (RTA).

Parham said that technical hitch in the signalling system at Ibn Battuta Station lead to suspension of train operation. Such technical issues are normal as seven new stations were opened on Friday and additional trains were put on service, he said.

The problem started at around 4.30pm. It is the time when lot of people use the Metro to go shopping on the weekend.

“We are commuting passengers on buses which are run along the Red Line covering all the affected stations,” said Parham.

However, passengers got infuriated due to delays. “I waited at the newly opened Dubai Marina Station for more than two hours but there was no train,” said Jenny, who lives in Dubai Marina area. She said it was quite frustrating as there were no clear announcements.

Danny, a Filipino, said that he went to Ibn Battuta Mall on the train but ended up coming back in the bus as the train stopped operation for reasons he was not told at the stations. “We were asked to disembark the train and leave after about 30 minutes’ wait inside the train,” he added.