Newton MRT station tunnel fire caused by short circuit of power cable

The fire at Newton MRT station on Wednesday morning has been extinguished. There were no casualties. 

[See video here. More photos here]

SMRT said in Facebook update that the fire started around 905am. It involved electrical wirings just north of the Newton station, about five metres away from the station platform. The fire, which caused smoke to get inside the MRT, was put out in an hour.

At the time, north-bound trains along the North-South line were affected and free bus services were activated between Newton and Toa Payoh to ferry affected commuters. Free bus bridging services were also provided for commuters between Marina Bay and Toa Payoh.

South-bound trains towards the city were also turned around at Newton station while the fire was being put out, causing a delay to commuters who were on their way back to work after the extended Lunar New Year break.

Normal train service resumed after a 2.5-hour disruption.

SCDF said it dispatched two fire engines, two red rhinos and several support vehicles when it was alerted shortly after 9am. The fire was extinguished using fire extinguishers and a small quantity of foam.

A video sent to Yahoo! Singapore by a commuter showed thick smoke inside the station as commuters were seen exiting the station calmly.

Commuter Victor Tan, who was on a train heading to his office in Toa Payoh, said his train was delayed for several minutes at Newton MRT shortly before 9am as a station announcement was made regarding the delay.

The 31-year-old civil servant then noticed smoke starting to spread in the cabins and passengers began evacuating the train in an orderly manner when the train doors opened.

He said "the smoke wasn't choking" and "everyone evacuated in an orderly manner".

The fire is the latest in a line of MRT disruptions stretching back for the last two years. 

Just last month, nearly 60,000 commuters were affected by a seven-hour breakdown along the North-East Line.

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