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No PSLE students affected by 3-hour train delay

SINGAPORE — Train commuters faced delays along a stretch of the East West Line (EWL) for close to three hours in the early morning on Thursday (Sept 28), due to a track point fault.

SINGAPORE — Train commuters faced delays along a stretch of the East West Line (EWL) for close to three hours in the early morning on Thursday (Sept 28), due to a track point fault.

Operator SMRT sent a tweet at 5.53am warning commuters to expect additional 30 minutes in their travel time between Tanah Merah and Pasir Ris MRT stations. About 20 minutes later, it said the delay was between Tampines and Pasir Ris stations.

Normal train services resumed shortly after 8.30am.

Thursday’s disruption drew a flurry of comments from parents and others, who noted that it was the first day of the written examinations for the Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE).

While the fault was being cleared, the Ministry of Education published a Facebook post telling affected Primary 6 students going for their English language PSLE paper at 8.15am to call their school as soon as possible and assured them that they would still be given the full duration to finish the test.

In response to queries, the Singapore Examinations and Assessment Board (SEAB) said “no schools have informed SEAB that any candidates were affected by the train service disruption”.

Some on social media, however, said that students caught in the delay would have entered the examination hall in less than optimum condition, possibly affecting their performance.

A spokesperson of the SEAB said that prior to the start of the national examinations, it had advised students to “plan for sufficient travel time” and reminded them “about the actions they should take if affected by train service disruptions”.

“LTA (Land Transport Authority) alerts SEAB to any major train service disruption during the national examination period,” said the spokesperson, adding that candidates would not be penalised for being late if they had difficulties getting to their examination centres on time due to such disruptions.

Last month, students sitting for their PSLE oral examinations on Aug 18 were also caught out by two disruptions, affecting the Downtown and North-South lines.

Signalling faults snarled service for about three hours, including a stretch where the entire Downtown Line was disrupted. The SEAB said then that fewer than 10 students were late for their oral examination. These students were given time to rest before taking their test.

The last reported disruption on SMRT’s rail service happened on Sept 15, when there was a 20-minute delay between Marina South Pier and Toa Payoh stations at around 9pm.

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