The Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT-3) said the number of unloading incidents of their trains from January to September this year has only reached 18 – its lowest recorded in the last eight years.
This is compared to 480 unloading incidents from January to September in 2016, the highest recorded since 2012, according to official records of the MRT-3 control center.
In a message posted on Facebook, the MRT-3 said the substantial improvement came after they stopped the “force deployment” of unsafe and unreliable trains to ensure the safety of passengers.
“Amin din pong nais na klaruhin na ang MRT-3 ay hindi kailanman nagde-deploy ng tren na depektibo o sira. Mahalaga sa amin ang kaligtasan ng aming mga pasahero (We wish to clarify that the MRT-3 has never deployed defective or broken trains. The safety of our passengers is very important to us),” the MRT-3’s statement read.
The agency said force deployment of trains or deploying as many trains as possible regardless of safety or reliability, was practiced by the MRT-3’s previous maintenance contractor, Busan Universal Rail, Inc. (BURI), which was said to have been caused by a policy of payment to maintenance providers based on the number of deployed trains, regardless of whether it broke down or not.
BURI was terminated November 2017 and its responsibilities were taken over by the MRT-3’s Maintenance Transition Team and were followed by Sumitomo-MHI-TESP as the contractor for the Department of Transportation’s (DOTr) comprehensive rehabilitation program for the MRT-3.
The MRT-3 said its warehouse now contains a sufficient number of spare parts for fixing broken down trains and system components, a far cry from its previous state.
“Kung dati rin ay halos walang lamang spare parts ang MRT-3 warehouse, ngayon po ay nag-uumapaw ito sa dami (If in the past the MRT-3 warehouse contained almost no spare parts, it’s not overflowing),” the MRT-3 said.
Other improvements so far brought by the PHP18-billion comprehensive rehabilitation include 100 percent operation of all elevators in all MRT-3 stations, 30 out of 46 escalators working at full capacity, and installation of 93 air-conditioning units at MRT-3 carriages with 87 more coming.
Brand new rails are set to replace the MRT-3’s worn down and damaged rails beginning November and expected to be completed by February 2021.
The MRT-3 also assured its passengers that by July 2021 or 26 months since the start of its rehabilitation last May, there will be vast improvements in its services.
“Aakyat ang bilang ng mga running trains mula 15 hanggang 20, pabibilisin ang takbo ng tren mula 30 kilometer per hour (Kph) hanggang 60 kph, at babawasan ang waiting time mula sa kasalukuyang 7.5 minutes hanggang 3-3.5 minutes (Running trains will increase from 15 to 20, average train speed will rise from 30 kph to 60kph, and waiting time will be reduced from the current 7.5 minutes to 3.5 minutes),” the MRT-3 said. (PNA)