Defective wheels result in temporary reduction of Yellow Line monorail service

Picture courtesy of Transport Journal Newspaper

Defective Yellow Line monorail trains have been recalled and are no longer in use as they undergo comprehensive safety checks, according to Surapong Piyachote, the Deputy Transport Minister. The operator of the Yellow Line, Eastern Bangkok Monorail Co, has been instructed to conduct intensive safety inspections on all trains before reinstating them into service.

This directive was issued following an incident yesterday evening where a guide wheel detached from one of the trains, and subsequently struck a taxi after bouncing onto the road beneath. The operator cited defective ball bearings as the cause of the dislodged wheel last night.

Piyachote confirmed this morning that a certain batch of guide wheels was flawed, hence the immediate discontinuation of their usage, reported Bangkok Post.

“The exact cause of the wheel’s detachment, whether due to heat or the ball bearings, remains uncertain. A complete investigation is crucial. I suspect this issue might extend to other wheels as well. A broad inquiry is needed to establish whether the problem lies with the ball bearings or heat.”

He further clarified that the expected lifespan of the Yellow Line train wheels is approximately 300,000 hours, with the current usage standing at a mere 60,000 hours. Transport officials have been directed to collaborate with Eastern Bangkok Monorail to meticulously scrutinise the safety of every Yellow Line train before they resume service. This has resulted in a temporary reduction in services, now operating once every 30 minutes instead of the usual 5 to 10-minute intervals.

Piyachote emphasised that today’s service intervals are longer.

“The Transport Ministry must guarantee maximum service safety.”

Transport Minister Suriya Jungrungreangkit added that he had arranged a meeting with EBM representatives to discuss safety measures this afternoon.

The Yellow Line monorail serves the route between eastern Bangkok and Samut Prakan, while the Pink Line monorail operates between northern Bangkok and Nonthaburi. CRRC Puzhen Bombardier Transportation Systems, a joint venture of Canada-based Bombardier and CRRC Nanjing Puzhen, based in China, manufactured these trains.

Thailand NewsTransport News

Mitch Connor

Mitch is a Bangkok resident, having relocated from Southern California, via Florida in 2022. He studied journalism before dropping out of college to teach English in South America. After returning to the US, he spent 4 years working for various online publishers before moving to Thailand.

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