The SMRT CEO, Saw Phaik Hwa, even offered to consider stepping down over the incident, which regrettably were followed by more minor disruptions in the days following.
Being on a packed MRT train during the heat of Singapore can be uncomfortable but being stranded for five hours in a carriage without air conditioning must have been akin to hell.
In New Zealand, people have been known to force open carriage doors and spill out on to the tracks in the event of similar incidents, as they did on the opening night of the recent Rugby World Cup.
Singaporeans are a little more controlled in such circumstances but they must have been sorely tested. There are also reports that the local taxi drivers, who did very well out of the MRT's misfortune, saw this incident as an "income opportunity" - of course they did.
The Minister for Transport Lui Tuck Yew has also weighed into the fray saying that he too was disappointed by how SMRT handled the MRT disruption and would be holding them accountable. Heads will no doubt roll at some time in the future.
In a country that is so reliant on public transport a series of events such as the above make the population lose faith in the reliability of a service. We in New Zealand know this as we lost faith in NZ Rail decades ago. It is a very hard task for the company to win back custom and confidence once it is lost.
So it is also a question of context; in the main Singapore's MRT system is efficient, clean and reliable, a lot more so than many other countries including my own.