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Mon 2 Nov 2009 12:16 PM

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95% of Metro trains running on time - RTA

Rail Agency chief also says more staff being employed to crack down on passenger violations.

Dubai Metro train service availability has been 98 percent and more than 95 percent of trains have run on time since the launch of the rail system in September, a senior official has announced.

Ramadan Abdullah, director of operations at the Rail Agency of the Dubai Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), also said more staff have been employed to crack down on passenger violations.

In an interview with UAE daily Gulf News, Abdullah added that more than 2.5 million people had so far used the metro station, averaging about 57,000 passengers per day.

On passenger behaviour, he said people travelling in the wrong class had been the major mistake while passengers eating and drinking inside the trains was also an issue.

"We have launched various campaigns to educate them. We have increased the number of signs and instruction boards at the stations to educate passenger and guide them to through their journey.

"We have also increased the number of staff members at the stations and inside the trains to guide the passengers and check the violations. Also, we have hired more Arabic speaking staff, especially Emiratis, to be deputised at the stations."

Asked what improvements still needed to be made to the metro system, which launched with 10 stations on the Red Line on September 9, Abdullah added: "We are still in the teething phase of the Metro operations and we thus have several areas of improvements."

He added that he was satisfied with the metro's performance so far.

"The total number of train service disruption was minimal as compared to the total number of hours operated and it was also mostly caused by passenger actions such as pushing the emergency buttons. We have achieved train service availability of 98 percent and more than 95 percent punctuality level," he told the paper.

More than 178,213 long term validity Nol Cards and 484,907 Nol Red Tickets had been sold so far, he added.

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