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Senators appeal to DOTr to consider procurement of new coaches for MRT

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Thursday, February 8th, 2018


MANILA, Philippines — The Metro Rail Transit (MRT) Line-3 has yet again experienced another breakdown at 10, Thursday morning.

According to MRT officials, the train encountered electrical failure which forced them to unload about 800 passengers at the northbound lane of Santolan-Annapolis station.

The defective train was immediately brought to the depot and the passengers loaded onto the next train.

As of 11 am, there were only seven trains in operation with 11 minutes arrival gap at each station.

Learning about the incident, some senators believe that with the continuous problems in the MRT operation, it is high time for the Department of Transportation (DOTr) to consider buying new coaches and return the 48 unused Dalian trains to China.

“So I think siguro umpisahan ni secretary. Desisyunan na lang niya kung anong gagawin sa Dalian na yan. Kung hindi na pwedeng gamitin, di mag-order na lang tayo ng train na bagay dun sa MRT,” said Senator Nancy Binay.

(So I think it should be initiated by the [Transportation] Secretary. He should just decide on what to do with those Dalian trains. If we cannot use those anymore, we should just order trains that are compatible with MRT.)

“Hindi talaga kasya, ‘wag nang pilitin. Mag-umpisa na tayong mag-order ng mga bago at isauli natin dahil nagawa iyan ng Singapore sa Dalian, sinauli sa kanila,” said Senator Grace Poe.

(It really doesn’t fit, don’t force it anymore. We should start ordering new ones and return the [Dalian trains] because it has been done by Singapore with Dalian, they returned it.)

Poe, the chairman of the Senate Committee on Public Services said that the DOTr should also decide now on the issue of MRT-maintenance provider.

“Tanungin na rin natin kung totoo bang merong interes ang Sumitomo o ang Japan na mag-takeover. Anong ginagawa nila, tuloy-tuloy na ba ang pag-uusap niyan? Kasi hanggang sa ngayon hindi pa rin malinaw kung sino ang papalit sa maintenance,” said Poe.

(Let’s also ask if Sumitomo or Japan is really interested in taking over. What are they doing? Are the talks still ongoing? Because until now, it’s still unclear who will take over maintenance.)

The 48 Dalian-train coaches are worth P3.8 billion.

The Philippine government has initially paid Dalian locomotive and rolling stock corporation P800 million.

These trains, however, remain unused as they are not compatible with the current system of the MRT. — Nel Maribojoc | UNTV News & Rescue

 

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Dalian trains to go on simulation run prior to 2018 debut

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Monday, October 1st, 2018

MANILA, Philippines – Railway engineers from the Department of Transportation (DOTr), MRT-3, the Philippines National Railways, and CRRC Dalian recently convened to discuss the conduct of a simulation run of Dalian trains this October.

The said test run aims to review the reliability and compatibility of Dalian trains before officially hitting the tracks by the end of the year.

The MRT management, meanwhile, assured that the simulation run will not affect the MRT-3’s regular train services.

Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade previously said that they plan to inaugurate the official operation of the 48 Dalian trains before the end of 2018 only if they pass safety and security standards. – Marje Pelayo (with reports from Joan Nano)

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Dalian trains set for test run in October

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Tuesday, September 11th, 2018

Weight testing of the new trains purchased by DOTR from China’s Dalian Locomotive and Rolling Stocks Company

After lying idle in storage for more than two years at the MRT-3 depot in Quezon City, the trains acquired from China’s Dalian Locomotive (DLRSC) and Rolling Stocks Company are scheduled to undergo a test run next month.

Department of Transportation (DOTr), Undersecretary for Railways Timothy John Batan said that two to three train sets are set to operate under provisional service revenue in October to ensure that the trains are compatible and are safe to use by passengers of MRT-3.

Philippine National Railways general manager, Jun Magno said the DLRSC has assured that possible hazards in the units have already been rectified.

DOTr and the Planning Department of the PNR will let the Dalian trains run for 150 hours to ensure that potential hazards have been rectified by DLRSC.

“Kung may hazards pa rin di na namin tatapusin 150; isauli na namin sa Dalian, ‘Rectify niyo ulit ito’,” said Magno.

If the test drive is successful, Usec. Batan said they may possibly begin to operate the trains during the actual operating hours of MRT-3.

“Magpapatakbo muna tayo outside revenue hours para hindi natin maapektuhan yung operations natin habang may pasahero and later on kapag umusad tayo dun sa susunod na phase ng inspection ay gagawin na natin siya during revenue hours magagamit na siya ng mga pasahero,” said Batan

Meanwhile, an agreement on the takeover of Sumitomo as the rehabilitation and maintenance provider of MRT-3, is expected to be signed at the end of this month.

Last August, the economic managers have given the go signal for the rehabilitation of MRT-3 with a budget of P18.8 billion loaned from  the Japanese government.

Once the rehabilitation is completed, it is expected to double the number of operational trains until the year 2022. — Joan Nano

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Poe warns DOTr of budget cut over PUV modernization issues

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Tuesday, August 28th, 2018

Senator Grace Poe via Facebook

 

Senate Committee on Public Services chairperson Senator Grace Poe has warned officials of the Department of Transportation (DOTr) of a possible cut in next year’s budget if they fail to answer various concerns of jeepney drivers and operators regarding the public utility vehicle modernization program of the government.

“Kung hindi nila magagawa yan magkakaproblema sila pagdating ng kanilang budget. Nasa kapangyarihan ng Kongreso at Senado na gawin yan,” Poe said.

“Siyempre ayaw naman natin na basta ipitin dahil maraming apektado, pero kailangan muna nilang patunayan ang kanilang sarili na sa tamang paraan nila ginagasta ang pinapamahagi ng taumbayan.”

Among the issues that the senator wants to clarify is whether or not the P80,000 subsidy would be enough to allow the drivers and operators to comply with the program.

She also noted the slow-paced distribution of fuel vouchers and claimed that, to date, only 25 percent of the total population of jeepney drivers nationwide has received their vouchers.

Senator Poe was the guest of honor at Monday’s transport summit led by the transport group Pinagkaisang Samahan ng mga Tsuper at Operator Nationwide (PISTON).

The event was attended by hundreds of jeepney drivers and operators who expressed their doubts and complaints anew against the PUV nmodernization program.

PISTON clarified that they support the proposed improvements in the public transportation sector, but not the current version of DOTr and Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) wherein, he said, only big car manufacturers will benefit from it and not the jeepney drivers and commuters.

The group is grateful to Poe for understanding their concerns.

PISTON national president, George San Mateo said, “Kampante kami at natutuwa kami sa pahayag ni Senator Poe kasi yun naman talaga ang gusto namin mangyari – maimbestigahan ulit itong isyu ng pekeng modernization. Lalo na on the basis ng mga bagong sirkular na nilabas ng LTFRB.”

Piston is asking the Senate committee to investigate what they claim is a questionable provision under the omnibus franchising guidelines that forces the individual operators to purchase modern jeepney units.

The LTFRB on the other hand has been pushing for upgraded models of jeepney units to prevent road accidents. — Joan Nano

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