MANILA — The 48 new MRT coaches the government acquired from Chinese company, Dalian Locomotive Corporation and Rolling Stock Company, remain unusable.
In an interview on the program “Get it Straight with Daniel Razon”, transportation undersecretary Cesar Chavez said, the structural and technical parts of the new coaches are not compatible with the rails of MRT.
Undersecretary Chavez said it is based on their consultation with experts.
Halimbawa nagkaroon ng pagpapalit, kapag nagkaroon ng pagpapalit pwede ba kayong mag maintain ulit, banggitin na natin ang Sumitomo, pagka kami ulit ang mag maintain nyan, definitely hindi naming papatakbuhin ang dahlian, bakit? kasi maraming structural defect may mga technical defect hindi compatible sa riles, hindi compatible sa ibang mga tren,” DOTr Cesar Chavez said.
(For example we replace the maintenance provider, let’s say its Sumitomo now. If they maintain it, they will not run the Dalian trains. Why? Because the coaches have a lot of structural defects and are not compatible with the rails and are not compatible with the trains.)
Chavez explained that the MRT has to secure an international third party certification to ensure that the new coaches are safe to use.
The MRT is still resolving the problem on the signalling system of the new coaches, and the enhancement in the supply of electricity needed for the operation of the new light rail vehicles.
Meanwhile, Busan Universal Rail Incorporated (BURI) defended itself from the issues plaguing MRT operations.
BURI insists that its job is to maintain MRT trains, and not work on the repair of rails and power supply.
“Mag-18 years na yung system, medyo matanda na yan. It has undergone several periods of tinatawag nating servicing… yun yung sinasabi naming unfair. Marami yan, hindi lang kami nagpo-provide ng service sa line,” BURI spokesperson and legal counsel Atty. Charles Perfecto Mercado said. (The system is almost 18 years old. It is quite old and has undergone several periods of servicing. We find this unfair. There are many. We are not the only company that provides service to the MRT line.)
For now, the Department of Transportation is waiting for the explanation from BURI on the recent glitches in the operation of MRT, and why their contract should not be terminated by the government.
BURI signed the maintenance contract for MRT in January 2016. Its contract will end in 2019. — Joan Nano | UNTV News & Rescue