DOTr: More foreign experts to help fix MRT woes
More foreign experts are being called in to help reduce system breakdowns on the Metro Rail Transit (MRT 3), as officials hope to see improvements on the problem-plagued rail line on Edsa before the Holy Week break in March.
An official of the Department of Transportation (DOTr) said the agency is tapping experts from different partner countries to help them address issues affecting the MRT’s day-to-day operations and long-term performance.
Apart from Japan which will finance the rehabilitation and maintenance of the train line, Australia will also send two railway engineers to assist in the operations, according to Timothy John Batan, the undersecretary for rails.
In February, a six-man team of engineers from Asian Development Bank will also arrive to advise the DOTr on the scope of the long-term intervention needed by the train system.
A 10-man team of engineers from German firm TUV Rheinland arrived in the country last week to assess and give recommendations on how the MRT 3 can be fixed, Batan said.
“Our objective is to achieve the MRT 3’s design capacity of 20 three-car trains, with headway of 3 minutes, running at 60 kilometers per hour,” Batan added in a briefing on Wednesday.
At present, the trains are limited to a maximum speed of only 40 kph due to the condition of the rail and rolling stock, he said.
Since the government took over the maintenance of the MRT 3 from Busan Universal Rail Inc. in November, an average of 15 trains have been deployed daily.
In the next 30 to 60 days, the DOTr is expecting the arrival of newly purchased spare parts, Batan also said.