Wed, Jun 27, 2012 - Page 3 News List

Train overbooking error leaves passengers seat-less

By Shelley Shan  /  Staff reporter

Passengers aboard a South Link express train were unable to locate their seats yesterday after a Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) personnel error resulted in train tickets being overbooked.

The nation’s largest railway service apologized for the inconvenience, adding that the 118 passengers were entitled to a full refund.

Du Wei (杜微), director of the TRA’s transportation department, said the administration had since planned to add train coaches to the Tzuchiang-class express train from today on the South Link line.

“The clerk who was in charge of the seating arrangements for the train entered June 26 as the departure date, rather than June 27,” Du said. “Another clerk who was in charge of double-checking the seating arrangement failed to discover the error, which then led to the overselling [incident].”

Du said the No. 301 Tzuchiang-class train first carried passengers from Greater Tainan to Jioucyutang (九曲堂) station in Greater Kaohsiung. The TRA then dispatched a Chukuang-class train to carry passengers from Jioucyutang to Taitung Railway Station and another train to further transport them from Taitung to Hualien, he said.

According to the TRA, the seats these passengers reserved were from carriages No. 7 to No. 9 and the two clerks would be censured or given stiffer penalties, it added.

Starting today, the TRA is to add extra train carriages to several express trains operating along the east coast to meet seasonal demand, including two additional coaches on the express trains that run between Taipei and Hualien, eight on the express trains from Taipei to Taitung and eight on the trains from Kaohsiung to Taitung.

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