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Commuters suffer on subway lines

Feb 24,2018
A subway maintenance car derailed and platform doors malfunctioned in several subway stations on Friday morning, leading to underground chaos during the rush hour in Seoul.

Around 4:30 a.m., a subway maintenance car at work at the Gimpo Airport Station on line No. 9 derailed.

It took hours before the car could be cleared off the rail and subways were delayed until around 7:20 a.m., about an hour after the first subway should have departed on the line.

The subway delays led to some serious mayhem inside trains and at platforms.

“Things are crazy down here on line No. 9.,” wrote a commuter on social media.

“There is a woman next to me who looks like she’s about to faint because the subway is too crowded.”

“There is a short woman standing next to me in the subway who is about to be buried alive under people,” wrote another commuter. “Everybody please stop getting on the subway.”

“I’ve been waiting for a subway at Gayang Station for so long,” wrote another. “It’s already 7:30 a.m. I should have been at the office by now.”

“We’re not sure why the car derailed,” said an employee of the Seoul Metro Line9 Corporation. “We will be investigating what happened.”

But line No. 9 wasn’t the only line experiencing train delays Friday morning.

“The traffic on line No. 3 is unbelievable,” wrote a commuter on Twitter. “I can’t believe that of all days I choose to use the subway, this happens.”

“I’ve been waiting for a subway at Sindorim Station [on lines No. 1 and 2] for a while,” wrote another commuter. “The trains keep coming but the queues aren’t getting any shorter.”

“The subway on line No. 5 keeps stopping,” wrote another commuter on Twitter. “What’s wrong with today?”

Others complained of subway delays on lines No. 1 and 4 as well.

The Seoul Metro, which runs lines No. 1 through 8, said the headlight on one subway on line No. 1 malfunctioned around 8:19 a.m.

All the passengers on the subway had to get off and wait for the next train, resulting in some commotion.

A train on line No. 3 was also delayed around 8:30 a.m.

“There were some malfunctioning platform doors at some stations this morning,” said an employee of Seoul Metro.

“We think it’s because the snow that covered the top of the subways melted and came in contact with the platform door sensors, creating some errors there.”

When a platform door malfunctions, a station employee has to manually open the door.

“We’ve noticed some delays on lines No. 1 through 7, but we think the traffic should be lessening after the rush hour,” the employee said.

BY LEE MIN-JEONG, YONHAP [chung.juhee@joongang.co.kr]