CAIRO: For the second time in less than three months, the first line of the underground in Cairo (Marg-Helwan) suffered a ventilation malfunction between the Tora El-Balad and “Dar El-Salam stations.
The Egyptian Company for the Management and Operation of the Metro said that at approximately 2:30 pm on Monday, security forces cut off the electrical supply after a malfunction in the ventilation network, which resulted from an electric short circuit and a subsequent fire, before taking only an hour to get the operation working again.
However, some passengers claim the malfunction lasted about five hours, causing unnecessary delays and affecting the general traffic flow in the downtown area.
According to a Ministry of Transport statement, the malfunction was quickly repaired, with no further information on the recurrent problem or the time it took to fix the problem.
The drivers where forced to operate the trains on a single line between the two stations at an average speed of 30km/h, while traveling in the opposite direction.
Also, passengers continued to flood the stations and cars after station officials’ decision to maintain the ticket sales and to no inform them of the problem.
The Egyptian company insisted that their team of experts and technicians made extraordinary efforts to finish the job that, according to their statement, should have been repaired by the early hours of Tuesday.
A similar incident happened on April 23, where an explosion in the general electrical wiring froze underground transportation for seven hours.
Meanwhile, the company is starting an awareness campaign to regulate the process of getting on and off the underground cars to eliminate large crowds, with the help of trained university students.
The campaign will launch Aug. 2, according to the company’s chairman, engineer Magdy El-Azab.