SMRT appoints 3 new officers to boost rail operations, maintenance

SMRT appoints 3 new officers to boost rail operations, maintenance

SINGAPORE: Transport operator SMRT has appointed three new executive officers in a bid to "strengthen" its focus on rail operations and maintenance.

In an internal memo on Thursday (Feb 1) seen by Channel NewsAsia, SMRT announced the appointment of Mr Alvin Kek as chief operations officer (rail) and two chief maintenance officers, Mr Chia Chun Wah and Mr Yee Boon Cheow.

All three appointments take effect from Thursday.

Currently senior vice-president for rail operations, Mr Kek will oversee operations for the North-South and East-West Lines, Circle Line and Bukit Panjang Light Rail Transit as chief operations officer (rail).

To ensure a "rigorous maintenance regime" and "sharper focus" on strengthening engineering capabilities and on-going asset renewal, SMRT said it was also appointing two chief maintenance officers.

"With the transition to a new rail financing framework and transfer of our operating assets to the Land Transport Authority (LTA) in October 2016, we have been working in close collaboration with LTA to improve rail reliability through our maintenance and operational regimes, and to jointly address maintenance and renewal needs of the overall rail system over its life cycle," said SMRT.

Current senior vice-president for maintenance and engineering Chia Chun Wah has been appointed chief maintenance officer 1.

He will continue to be overall in charge of all maintenance and engineering fields in SMRT Trains.

Mr Yee Boon Cheow, who is seconded from LTA, has been appointed chief maintenance officer 2. He will concurrently head the Integrated Maintenance Office. This is part of a joint LTA-SMRT effort to "enhance rail reliability and system performance", said SMRT.

The transport operator has come under fire for a series of major train disruptions and incidents, including a collision at Joo Koon MRT station and the flooding of an MRT tunnel at Bishan.

Source: CNA/nc