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Melaka monorail downtime is not a joke

TRANSIT took note of a few interesting articles from down in Malacca, where the Chief Minister appears to be making light of the embarrassing situation with the troublesome monorail.

TRANSIT is disappointed that the CM is not taking the problems of the monorail seriously. His suggestions that tourists are interested in coming to Malacca to see the broken down monorail are insulting and show a lack of respect for taxpayer money, which has been invested into this project.

At the same time, (or should we say, to make things worse) the CM is talking about expanding the monorail to provide service along Jalan Tun Ali in the backside area of Jalan Hang Tuah, the attempted new town centre / institutional zone for the city.

CM sees lighter side of Malacca monorail controversy (The Star)
Tuesday December 13, 2011

MALACCA: Despite the endless glitches that has struck the Malacca Tourist Monorail, Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Ali Rustam said there is a bright side to the issue.

“I know many quarters have criticised the monorail service due to the glitches but we are optimistic it will gain popularity once the flaws have been rectified.

“It has gained fame thanks to the media reports about the earlier problems,” he said, when officiating at the ground-breaking of the second phase of the service at Jalan Tun Mutahir here yesterday.

[TRANSIT: It has been said that there is no such thing as bad publicity … but that’s not quite true.]

Mohd Ali said the service had malfunctioned 27 times since its launch in October last year.

On the right track: Models posing next to a replica of the new Malacca Tourist Monorail coach that will begin services once the second phase has been completed in February 2013. Image courtesy of The Star.

“We almost made it to the Guinness Book of World Records for encountering countless breakdowns,” he quipped.

[TRANSIT: Hilarious.]

“But on the bright side, a recent breakdown that caused two tourists to be trapped was flashed by the media globally.

“Now, tourists want to be ferried on our monorail, so that they could proudly say they had the opportunity to ride on the so-called troubled service,” Mohd Ali said.

He said the state government had recently commissioned two Chinese engineers from manufacturer Unis Technology Company Limited, to oversee and resolve problems plaguing the monorail operation.

Mohd Ali said the Chinese engineers discovered that the previous glitches were mainly caused by improper handling of the monorail system by local technicians.

“The engineers are now sharing their expertise on the appropriate way of operating the system so that it would not halt midway,” he said.

On the second phase, Mohd Ali said the 1.3km track will connect the Taman Rempah station to Jalan Tun Ali and Jalan Tun Rempah.

The RM21mil project is expected to be completed by February 2013.

Mohd Ali said the second phase would include traffic and signalling management systems to ensure passengers’ safety.

A new coach, which can carry 24 passengers with improved safety features, will be used in the second phase.


We have to wonder how much longer it will be before the government of Malacca invests in real public transport rather than continuing to spend money on this ineffective people mover to take tourists around … so they can see very little of interest.

In any case, we cannot really blame CM Mohd Ali, can we? After all, he has made attempts to improve public transport (at least as he sees it) and we bet that so far, no one has told him he is wrong.

Also noted is that the operator of the monorail is holding fire and safety drills in the ‘downtime’ period.

Monorel Melaka staff descends from a monorail coach using a rope ladder during a fire drill at Hang Jebat Station, Taman Rempah, Malacca today. NST picture by Muhammad Hatim Ab Manan

Unfortunately the news was not good in KL, where passengers were stranded on the KL Monorail … possibly because of the flash floods that have affected the capital.

2 replies on “Melaka monorail downtime is not a joke”

It will paint a bad name to Malaysia. Our goverment is on full scale to transform the country to better. But seem Melaka CM is going to another direction. We do want to be “infamous” for the wrong thing. Being trapped in a monorail is not a joke. It cause so much unnecessary stress to tourists. Tourists (Foreign/Locals) came to enjoy themselves, relax themselves. Stuck on monorail will jeopardise their travel plan. At end, it will become a “white elephant” because people around the world will start to express themselves in blogs.

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