Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Online flak for SMRT after sacking of 2 staff involved in Pasir Ris accident

SCDF officers extricate a body on the scene of the train accident at Pasir Ris MRT station which left two SMRT staff dead. TODAY file Foto

SMRT Corporation has been criticised for sacking 2 employees involved in the fatal train track accident on March 22, with a number of social media users questioning its decision on Wed (Sep 14).

One of the sacked employees was said to be the driver of the train that killed Muhammad Asyraf Ahmad Buhari, 24, and Nasrulhudin Najumudin, 26.


In a public post, Facebook user Andrew Loh called the firing a case of “scapegoating”. He asked if the sacked train driver was really at fault, and even if he was, whether he should be made to bear the full responsibility.


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Two SMRT workers to appeal against firing
Sacked for their involvement in a fatal track accident, the duo will receive help from the union on their appeals

The two employees recently fired by SMRT over an accident will submit appeals this week.

The transport operator has given the workers till this week to appeal, and the National Transport Workers’ Union (NTWU) is helping them to do so, said labour chief Chan Chun Sing.

The union will discuss the next steps after the appeals have been filed, Chan told the media on Friday (September 16) on the sidelines of a forum for HR professionals.

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Sacking of staff over train accident part of fair disciplinary process

Defending its decision to sack 2 employees over the train accident that killed 2 men at Pasir Ris MRT Station, SMRT Corporation disclosed in an email to employees on Wednesday (Sep 14) that warning letters and performance downgrades were given to several others as part of a “fair, thorough and comprehensive” disciplinary process.

There was a public outcry after news broke on Wednesday morning that the transport operator had fired 2 employees, including the train driver, involved in the March 22 tragedy, where two trainees doing routine maintenance work were hit by an oncoming train.


In an email to all SMRT staff members later on Wednesday, SMRT Trains’ managing director Lee Ling Wee said: “It is important for SMRT Trains staff to know that our disciplinary process is fair .... We do not single out any staff or department to bear the responsibility when things go wrong.”


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More SMRT staff disciplined over track accident that killed two trainees


More SMRT employees, including "senior management", were disciplined for their role in the track accident on March 22 that killed 2 trainees.


In an internal mail to staff on Wednesday, SMRT Trains managing director Lee Ling Wee said 2 employees had been dismissed but several others had also been disciplined.


"Besides the 2 dismissals, verbal and written warning letters were issued to staff across several grades," Mr Lee wrote.


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Fatal track accident: More SMRT staff disciplined

2 trainees were killed when they were hit by a train on the track near Pasir Ris station on Mar 22. SMRT said in April that failure to follow safety measures - including allowing a train to ply in automatic mode while workers were on site, and not deploying watchmen to look out for approaching trains - had led to the accident.ST FILE FOTO

The Straits Times understands that the driver might not have seen the workmen on the track &, if he had seen them, did not sound the horn as required. According to sources, the train had switched tracks moments before hitting the workers. Train drivers have no control over track switching.


A 2nd employee, said to be part of the work team on the track that day, was also dismissed.


The Straits Times understands that a senior controller of the network's Operations Control Centre also left following the accident.


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2 SMRT staff, including train driver, sacked over fatal Pasir Ris accident

2 SMRT staff have been sacked over a fatal accident near Pasir Ris MRT station in March, when 2 trainees were hit and killed by an oncoming train, the National Transport Workers' Union (NTWU) confirmed on Wed (Sep 14).

Channel NewsAsia understands that one of the two staff members sacked was the driver of the train that hit the 2 trainees.

According to Mr Melvin Yong, the union’s executive secretary, NTWU had asked SMRT not to take action against the staff until official investigations were completed.

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SMRT sacks train driver in fatal track accident
An SMRT train arrives at a station in S'pore on Jul 19, 2016 FOTO: REUTERS

Transport operator SMRT Corp has fired the train driver who was involved in a fatal track accident that killed 2 of his colleagues in March.

The Straits Times understands that Mr Rahmat Mohd, 49, was dismissed yesterday after an internal disciplinary inquiry.

Mr Rahmat, who was reassigned to a non-driving job after the accident, said he felt "sad" about the company's decision. "I've no plans at the moment," he added.


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Firing of SMRT driver draws flak
He had been involved in the fatal Pasir Ris accident, and his sacking has elicited a response from the union

SMRT Corporation has been criticised for dismissing the driver of the train that killed two maintenance workers earlier this year, with a number of social media users questioning its decision.

Rahmat Mohd, 49, was reassigned to a non-driving job following the accident, but was later sacked on Tuesday (September 13) after an internal disciplinary inquiry.

Rahmat said he felt “sad” about the company’s decision. “I have no plans at the moment,” he said.

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Dismissal of SMRT employees over fatal accident raise questions from public, even from victims’ family

The news of the dismissal of two staff over the fatal accident in March this year, raise pertinent questions over the grounds in which SMRT has decided upon to take disciplinary action against the two employees, especially the train driver who has been ruled to be not responsible for the accident.

Mr Rahmat Mohd, 49, the train driver involved in the accident in March, had been assigned to a non-driving job after the accident. According to The Straits Times, he was called to the SMRT office yesterday for an internal inquiry and discharged right away afterward.

Responding to queries from Today Online, 33-year-old Nasrulhudin’s eldest brother Nasrifudin, a civil servant said that his family was shocked to hear about the sacking of Mr Rahmat. He said, "He could be the breadwinner of the family so we are also sad for him.

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Andrew Loh FB 13 September at 18:40

Was the train driver really at fault? Even if he has to bear some responsibility, should he bear full responsibility? Seems to me this is scapegoating.


Amazing that, at the other end, despite years of failures, disruptions, delays, and all sorts of incidents on our trains, affecting millions of commuters, NOT A SINGLE higher-up has ever been held accountable.


In fact, they are even being paid more than a DPM! Why is it that it is always the lower-downs who are dealt with swiftly, while the higher-ups are rewarded handsomely despite numerous failings? Amazing.


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Netizens up in arms over unjustified dismissal of SMRT train driver

It has been reported that the SMRT Corporation had fired the train driver who was involved in the fatal accident on 22 March, that claimed the lives of two SMRT maintenance staff along the track at a servicing point near Pasir Ris station.

Mr Rahmat Mohd, 49, the train driver involved in the accident in March, had been assigned to a non-driving job after the accident. According to The Straits Times, he was called to the SMRT office yesterday for an internal inquiry and discharged right away afterward.

Mr Rahmat is quoted to have said, “I feel sad, I have no plan at the moment.”

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Transport Minister needs to look into dismissals by SMRT

Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) has issued a statement condemning the dismissal of two staff by SMRT Corporation who is said to be involved in the train accident in March this year. The accident claimed the lives of two other SMRT employees when they went onto the tracks due to their on-the-job training.

Straits Times published a story about how the train driver involved in the March accident, was dismissed by SMRT after being called to the office on Tuesday.

SDP pointed out that in contrast with SMRT's dismissal of the two staff, disciplinary action was taken against staff members in the case of the Hepatitis-C outbreak , only after the inquiry was completed.

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Khaw Boon Wan must look into SMRT sackings

The SMRT’s decision to sack two of its employees over the deaths of Muhammad Asyraf Ahmad Buhari and Nasrulhudin Najumudin earlier this year raises serious questions.

The first is that the dismissals have taken place before official investigations are completed. Even the victims’ families have questioned such a move.

Contrast this with Hepatitis-C outbreak in 2015. In that case, disciplinary action was taken against 12 staff members in “leadership positions” at the Singapore General Hospital. The Ministry of Health (MOH) also disciplined four MOH officers holding “director-level or equivalent roles” over the incident which resulted in eight deaths and 22 infections with the virus.

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SMRT must come clean on wrongful dismissal of train driver

Two days ago, NTWU confirmed the SMRT driver involved in a fatal accident in March, where 2 of its trainees were killed, was fired. PAP MP Melvin Yong, secretary of the National Transport Workers’ Union (NTWU), made the confirmation.

According to Melvin, SMRT had been informed to “withhold any actions against the affected workers until completion of official investigations so as to not prejudice the outcome of the official investigations”. CNA But with NTWU being a pseudo workers’ union, it comes as no surprise that its words had fallen on SMRT’s deaf ears: the driver was ‘duly’ dismissed.

To confirm NTWU’s pseudo status, Melvin said “NTWU will review the situation, study the grounds for dismissal …”. This essentially means NTWU is toothless, similar to CASE and NTUC, when it comes to protecting workers’ rights.

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SMRT sacks train driver involved in track accident that killed 2
Transport operator SMRT Corp has fired the train driver who was involved in a fatal track accident that killed 2 of his colleagues in March

The Straits Times understands that Mr Rahmat Mohd, 49, was dismissed yesterday after an internal disciplinary inquiry.

Mr Rahmat, who was reassigned to a non-driving job after the accident, said he felt "sad" about the company's decision.

"I've no plans at the moment," he added.

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SMRT should not take the easy way out by chopping low-ranking staff

Will Mr Nasrulhudin Najumudin (L) and Mr Muhammad Asyraf Ahmad Buhari (R) who perished in the SMRT train accident ever rest in peace in the sacking of two SMRT staff found guilty in the accident? Will their families ever being compensated at all after the tragic accident?

The authorities should start to take action against the head of any organisation that is responsible for any preventable accident and not to take the easy way out by chopping low-ranking staff. Its not only cowardly but inhumane as sometimes accidents happen because there is a lack of operational know-how and procedures. The two officers who were sacked will always have this blame-guilt feeling hanging over their head forever.

Management should not be spared from the rap as we saw how from the escape of terrorist Mas Selamat to this SMRT accident, rank-and-file staff are always penalised but the top officers are always spared. This is so unfair…

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Former SMRT train driver questions if tragic accidents could have been avoided

Actually, the principles of operating trains are almost the same anywhere in the world notwithstanding whether the train is driverless or otherwise. Having been a train driver, I’ll try to clear some misconceptions about trains which most people equate with driving a car on a road. In reality, they are quite distinct.

Briefly, our trains (with drivers) on the Green and Red lines (E/W & N/S) run on 3 modes – AM (Auto Mode), CM (Coded Manual) and RM (Restricted Manual). When the train is on RM, it’s driven manually with a speed limit of 18kph and below. If it exceeds 18kph, the train will trip meaning it will “die” off. The brake loop need to be re-set in order to move the train again. RM is always driven inside the train depot before the train is launched from the reception track to the mainline. When the track is down meaning there is no speed codes or when there are men at work on the track, RM is used to drive the train on the mainline. But it rarely happens.

Usually, our trains are operated on AM mode meaning in auto. From station to station, the train will move in AM (Auto). The driver simply presses the 2 buttons found on the console to activate the train. It will stop accurately by itself at the next station. Sometimes due to system glitch, it over runs or underruns a little causing the train to go out of alignment with the platform, the driver will have to adjust to the correct position in order for the train doors and PSD doors to open simultaneously. In AM, the train speed could go up to a max of 79 kph. Above that it will trip. There is always a safety buffer between this train to the next train based on the cascading speed codes which the system will automatically detect and adjust.

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NETIZENS DEFEND SMRT DRIVER WHO WAS FIRED - BLAME OPERATIONAL LAPSES

Following SMRT's announcement that the driver of the fatal accident had been dismissed, netizens stand in solidarity with Mr Rahmat Mohd citing that the dismissal was unfair.

Many questioned why Mr Rahmat was fired when operational lapses were only exposed after the tragic accident. Some questioned why the management did not step up to take responsibility.

Some of the operational lapses include allowing a train to ply in automatic mode while workers were on site, not deploying watchmen to look out for approaching trains, and failing to provide early warning to the work team.

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SMRT double death tragedy: Driver sacked – but why?

SIX months after two young employees were killed on Pasir Ris MRT tracks, we’re finally being told of a disciplinary action taken: The person driving the train has been sacked.

But what exactly did he do wrong? When asked, SMRT declined to comment on Mr Rahmat Mohd’s dismissal, saying that the company does not comment on staff disciplinary measures. But it could be that the 49-year-old had operated the train in automatic mode while workers were on site.

Earlier reports indicate that the train was travelling at 60kmh coming into Pasir Ris MRT station. However, before a work team is allowed on the affected track sector, a “speed limit of 0kmh” has to be set (in other words, the train cannot be moving) so that no train can enter on automated mode.

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Full Coverage:
2 SMRT staff, including train driver, sacked over fatal Pasir Ris accident
Online flak for SMRT after sacking of 2 staff involved in Pasir Ris accident
SMRT sacks train driver in fatal track accident
Netizens up in arms over unjustified dismissal of SMRT train driver
2 SMRT staff sacked over fatal Pasir Ris accident
Netizens up in arms over unjustified dismissal of SMRT train driver
Sacking of staff over train accident part of fair disciplinary process
SMRT report on fatal track accident to be reviewed by expert panel
MP asks Transport Ministry to consider penalising SMRT for Pasir
SMRT directed to implement safety measures after accident
MRT accident: Vital safety steps were not followed
In the SMRT war room - again
Fatal track accident: 2 sacked SMRT workers to submit appeals
SMRT must come clean on wrongful dismissal of train driver
SMRT sends emails to staff, defending its decision to dismiss two
Fatal track accident: More SMRT staff disciplined
Former SMRT train driver questions if tragic accidents could been avoided
SDP: Transport Minister needs to look into dismissals by SMRT
SMRT sends emails to staff, defending its decision to dismiss two staff
Netizens up in arms over unjustified dismissal of SMRT train driver
TR EMERITUS – The Voice of Singaporeans for Singapore – 淡马锡评论
SDP: Transport Minister needs to look into dismissals by SMRT
[toc] sdp: transport minister needs to look into dismissals by smrt
Khaw Boon Wan must look into SMRT sackings | The Independent
SMRT sent emails to defend its decision in dismissing its staffs
SMRT sacks train driver in fatal track accident, Transport News & Top


Two SMRT staff killed by an oncoming train
SCDF officers extricate a body on the scene of the train accident at Pasir Ris MRT station which left two SMRT staff dead. TODAY file Foto

Defending its decision to sack 2 employees over the train accident that killed 2 men at Pasir Ris MRT Station, SMRT Corporation disclosed in an email to employees on Wednesday (Sep 14) that warning letters and performance downgrades were given to several others as part of a “fair, thorough and comprehensive” disciplinary process.


There was a public outcry after news broke on Wednesday morning that the transport operator had fired 2 employees, including the train driver, involved in the March 22 tragedy, where two trainees doing routine maintenance work were hit by an oncoming train.


In an email to all SMRT staff members later on Wednesday, SMRT Trains’ managing director Lee Ling Wee said: “It is important for SMRT Trains staff to know that our disciplinary process is fair .... We do not single out any staff or department to bear the responsibility when things go wrong.”


read more


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