MTR services could be hit again today

Local | Charlotte Luo 8 Oct 2019

Hong Kong went through a semi-lockdown for a fourth day yesterday since the government announced the anti-mask law, with all MTR services suspended at 6pm, except for the Airport Express .

MTR Corp said last night that some stations were heavily damaged and may not be able to resume service in a short period of time. The MTR service will be closed earlier than usual today to allow more time for continuing repair works and inspection, it added.

The MTRC reopened 39 stations yesterday, but 54 other stations remained closed.

Tsuen Wan, Ma On Shan and Disneyland Resort were closed all day yesterday.

The MTR resumed limited services in the morning, then suspended all of them at 6pm. But the Airport Express continued operations from Hong Kong station direct to the airport.

The early closure will enable repairs before the first working day today after the three-day weekend that saw many of its lines vandalized by protesters angered by the anti-mask law.

The MTRC said if vandalism returns, service may be affected for a longer period.

"Since many members of the public depend on railway service for going to work, to school and for conducting daily affairs such as going to see the doctor, visiting family members, we ask everyone to be considerate and help to protect the railway facilities," the MTRC said.

A spokesman for the MTR Staff General Association said it would be difficult for services to fully resume today.

He said some stations were vandalized on Sunday, causing flooding inside and badly damaging electronic equipment.

As for damaged ticketing machines and gates, he said it would not be easy to arrange for staff to fix them quickly.

From 1pm yesterday, the Airport Express provided limited service between Hong Kong station and the airport, without stopping at Kowloon, Tsing Yi and AsiaWorld-Expo.

Up until the 6pm closure, trains ran every eight minutes on the Kwun Tong, Island, South Island, Tseung Kwan O, East Rail, West Rail and Tung Chung lines.

Multiple stations were damaged on Sunday, including Yau Ma Tei and Kowloon Tong. Facilities such as entry/exit gates, CCTV cameras and fire equipment were vandalized.

Eight people were injured in a train accident near Lai King station on Sunday.

The MTRC said the train was moving at about 10 kilometers per hour toward Mei Foo station when it hit a buffer shortly before 6pm.

The whole Tsuen Wan Line was suspended following the accident.

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