PNR rolls out 2 new trains for Tutuban-Alabang route

Robie de Guzman   •   February 20, 2020   •   375

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine National Railways (PNR) on Thursday deployed its two new trains to operate in Tutuban-Alabang route after its send-off ceremony and class assignment.

According to PNR general manager Junn Magno, the new trainsets which are part of the 8100 series of Diesel Multiple Unit (DMU) consist of four cars each and can carry up to 1,000 passengers per trip.

The train sets, which were acquired from Indonesian company PT Inka, are equipped with closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras, air conditioning units, and handrails for increased passenger capacity and safety.

The trains also feature poly-carbonate windows capable of withstanding moderate damage caused by thrown rocks, and automatic safety doors equipped with a sensory feature that will easily open should someone or something is caught in between.

With the new trains, the Tutuban-Alabang route will now have a total of five trains.

Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade, meanwhile, assured that PNR fare rates will not increase despite the deployment of new trainsets.

He also called on the public to be alert and immediately report any stone-throwing incident targeting PNR train units.

“Gusto nating manatiling matagal ang paggamit ng ating mga tren kailangan yung kooperasyon ng lahat gamitin ng tama huwag gumawa ng perwisyo, wag maging pasaway,” he said.

Magno said these train sets are part of the 37 railcars and three locomotives procured by the PNR which are expected to be completely delivered in the coming months.

“Hahabulin po natin na by the end of 2020, we should have enough capacity to serve the southern and part of the northern. Bubuksan na rin po natin yung Valenzuela line para ma-off load rin natin ang EDSA,” he said.

The PNR earlier deployed two other new trains to operate in Tutuban-FTI route in Taguig.

Once the delivery of new train sets is completed, PNR’s current 20,000 passenger capacity is expected to increase to 92,000, inching closer to its target of 200,000 daily passengers in the region. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Joan Nano)

Gov’t OKs resumption of limited work in rail projects amid COVID-19 quarantine

Robie de Guzman   •   April 8, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The government has allowed the resumption of work in 13 rail projects amid the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine, its task force in managing the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) crisis said.

Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) spokesperson and Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said the resumption of utility relocation and specified limited works across 13 rail projects will include rail replacement and other works needed for the Metro Rail Transit line 3 (MRT-3).

“Aprubado na po ang request ng Department of Transportation (DOTr) na ituloy ang mga utility relocation works at iba pang trabaho sa 13 proyekto tulad ng pagpalit sa riles ng MRT 3 na magagawa lamang pag walang operasyon,” Nograles said in a virtual press briefing on Tuesday.

In a statement, the DOTr said the 13 rail projects are the following:

  • LRT-1 Cavite Extension
  • LRT-2 East Extension
  • LRT-2 West Extension
  • LRT-2 Fire Restoration
  • MRT-3 Rehabilitation
  • MRT-7
  • Metro Manila Subway
  • Common Station
  • PNR Clark 1
  • PNR Clark 2 and Calamba
  • Subic-Clark Railway
  • PNR Bicol
  • Mindanao Railway

The IATF, however, reminded the DOTr to observe limited mobilization of personnel and skeletal staffing pattern. Social distancing measures should also be implemented.

On- or near-site accommodations and point-to-point shuttle services should also be provided to workers.

Nograles also said that regular disinfection of workplaces, shuttles, and accommodations should also be conducted.

He also stressed the IATF’s advice on the regular monitoring of the workers’ health, especially those who are experiencing coronavirus symptoms.

The operations of mass transport have been suspended since President Rodrigo Duterte placed the entire Luzon under an enhanced community quarantine to curb the spread of COVID-19.

The community quarantine was supposed to end on April 12 but it was extended until April 30.

To date, the Philippines has recorded 3,764 confirmed infections, with 177 fatalities and 84 total recoveries. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Joan Nano)

DOTr to turn 2GO passenger vessels into quarantine ships

Aileen Cerrudo   •   April 6, 2020

The Department of Transportation (DOTr) has partnered with 2GO shipping for the use of the latter’s passenger vessels as quarantine ships.

In a statement on Facebook, the DOTr announced that they will use 2GO’s passenger vessels as quarantine ships for returning seafarers and Overseas Filipino Worker (OFWs) who will undergo the 14-day quarantine.

2GO shipping has agreed to convert two of their ships which can accommodate up to 1,500 patients and are set to be operational by next week.

According to DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade, most of the hospitals in Metro Manila have already reached their full capacity and are seeking assistance.

“Most hospitals in Metro Manila have already pleaded for help in attending to COVID-19 patients. We will deploy these ‘quarantine ships’ to help our hospitals, our health workers, and our countrymen,” he said. AAC

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Deadline for renewal of licenses, franchises extended to April – DOTr

UNTV News   •   March 19, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Transportation (DOTr) has announced that the deadline for renewal of permits, licenses, and franchises has been extended until the end of April.

Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade said he has already issued the order to the Land Transportation Office (LTO) and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) in view of the coronavirus pandemic.

“We know and understand that our country is now in a difficult and trying situation. We have to step up and extend our help to the Filipino people the best way we can,” Tugade said.

The DOTr chief also said he has instructed LTO Assistant Secretary Edgar Galvante to reiterate and update the memorandum that the latter issued earlier this month directing LTO Regional Directors not to collect penalties for late registration of motor vehicles, and for the renewal of driver’s licenses that will expire during the enhanced community quarantine period. The validity of all student permits will also be extended.

Meanwhile, based on the guidelines issued by the LTFRB, all public utility vehicles with plate numbers ending in 3 and 4 will be allowed to confirm their units until 15 May 2020 with all penalties being waived.

With this, the DOTr said that the insurance policy under the Personal Passenger Accident Insurance Program (PPAIP) will also be automatically extended until 15 May 2020 without any additional fees on the part of the operators,

“Applications for Extension of Validity for Certificate of Public Convenience (CPC) that will expire from 17 March 2020 to 15 April 2020 can be filed until 15 May 2020 also with waiver of penalties,” it said.

“Provisional Authorities (PA) and Special Permits (SP) issued to TNVS, PUBs, TH, Taxi, and UV Express, with expiry dates covering the period of 17 March 2020 to 15 April 2020, will also be extended until 15 June 2020 with waiver of fees,” it added.

As for the Compliance Orders, Resolutions, and Decisions which direct operators to comply within a certain period and that fall between 17 March 2020 until 15 April 2020, the DOTr said it will allow compliance until 15 May 2020 with waiver of penalties, if there is any.

“The guidelines will apply to the Central Office and the National Capital Region-Regional Franchising and Regulatory Office, and all Regional Franchising and Regulatory Offices in Luzon,” it said. — ROBIE DE GUZMAN

Note: Sourced from DOTr statement

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