Poe hopeful for LRT-2’s shorter rehab period
MANILA, Philippines — Senator Grace Poe, chair of the committee on public services, on Friday expressed hope that rehabilitation for the Light Rail Transit 2 (LRT-2) will be done in less than nine months.
This after the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) has already allowed the Light Rail Transit Authority (LRTA) to examine the rectifiers that exploded last week and caused the suspension of LRT-2’s full operation.
In a statement Friday, Poe said her panel is “expecting the operations of LRT-2, the lone train linking the eastern part of the metropolis to the busiest areas in Manila, to normalize earlier than nine months after the Light Rail Transit Authority (LRTA) said on Thursday that it was already conducting a thorough check to rehabilitate the damaged substations.”
“What we hope to accomplish in this meeting is to give the affected commuters a glimmer of hope. As such, we would like to see less fingerpointing and more problem-solving. Of course, we can only apply the solutions if we make a proper diagnosis,” Poe added.
LRTA earlier said BFP finally allowed them to assess the rectifiers at Anonas, Quezon City, and the Santolan depot in Pasig City following the fire that caused its shutdown last week.
Due to the explosion, LRTA said its Santolan, Katipunan, and Anonas stations would be closed for six to nine months as it repairs the damaged equipment. Partial operations from Cubao station and Recto station, meanwhile, resumed last October 8.
“Since we were just allowed yesterday afternoon to open the rectifiers for actual assessment of the damage, we can only build the actual damage scenario probably in two days’ time,” LRTA deputy for operation and engineering Paul Chua said, as quoted in the same statement.
Chua added LRTA would submit to the Senate committee a report on the extent of damage incurred by the substations, the quantity of materials to be replaced, and a concrete timeline when LRTA can resume operations for Santolan to Anonas stations.
Poe, meanwhile, vowed her panel would monitor LRT’s rehabilitation and hope it would come up with a plan to improve their services.
“We will keep a close watch on the LRT’s rehabilitation, and beyond this, we will expect a more comprehensive plan on how to improve service and expand capacity. Our train riders deserve better,” Poe said. /kga
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