Traffic almost came to a standstill along the Marina Coastal Expressway (MCE) eastbound tunnel on Wednesday (17 May) afternoon, as the tunnel’s sprinklers were inadvertently activated.
A video of the incident showed traffic slowing down dramatically, as motorcyclists stopped by the side of the tunnel to put on their raincoats.
According to the Land Transport Authority (LTA), the water-based fire-fighting system before the exit to Fort Road was accidentally activated at 12.57pm.
“After verifying that there was no fire, the system was immediately switched off, and normal traffic condition resumed at about 1.06pm,” said an LTA spokesman. “LTA is investigating the cause of the incident. We apologise for the inconvenience caused to motorists.”
In April 2015, the sprinklers in the MCE were also accidentally set off, by a contractor who was doing cleaning and maintenance work.
According to reports, the MCE’s deluge system, or fire sprinkler system, dispenses 350 litres of water a second. The 5-kilometre MCE joins the East Coast Parkway, Kallang-Paya Lebar Expressway and Ayer Rajah Expressway. It is the first undersea road in Singapore, and cost $4.3 billion to build.