The MTR Corporation is planning to expand its large musical instrument registration programme to include sports equipment beginning August 1.

The company announced on Tuesday afternoon that those wishing to carry sports gear measuring between 170 centimetres and 235 centimetres, and with a length of any one side between 130 centimetres to 145 centimetres, must register under their extended scheme.

A schoolgirl who was stopped by MTR staff, leading to calls to allow large instruments, and now equipment, onto MTR trains. Photo: Chan Ka Lun via Facebook.

Francis Li, the Chief of Operating of the MTR Corporation said in a press release that “the registration scheme has been operating smoothly since its launch in November last year with about 2,900 applications received and processed so far. We hope the expansion of the scheme can meet the genuine needs of passengers with certain larger-sized sports equipment.”

The dimensions are the same as current specifications for large musical instruments. Those who have registered under the musical instrument programme need not apply again and will also be able to carry sports equipment.

Sai Ying Pun Station. Photo: MTR.

Passengers will be able to carry only one large registered sports item or a musical instrument each time. The dimensions will also still leave some equipment banned from the transportation network, however. Some snooker cues and their accompanying cases can exceed the 145cm limit. Retired snooker player Chan Kwok-ming told Apple Daily that he was once denied entry into the carriage because his carrying case was over 160cm long. Chan said that he has since switched to cues which can be disassembled.

Li said in the press release that the dimension limits are in place because of “safety reasons.”

Chantal Yuen

Chantal Yuen is a Hong Kong journalist interested in issues dealing with religion and immigration. She majored in German and minored in Middle Eastern studies at Princeton University.