MRT3 stops 24-hour schedule

June 4, 2009 1:53 pm 

By Lily O Ramos

MANILA, June 4 — Citing passenger safety and the need for effective maintenance of the railway trains, the Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT3) will no longer run on a 24-hour basis, according to Lysa Blancaflor, MRT3 public relations officer.

Effective maintenance of the MRT3 cannot be done if it continues to operate 24 hours daily, said Blancaflor.

The MRT3 experimented with a 24-hour, two-night operation from Monday to Tuesday this week to service odd-hour workers like call center agents, factory workers, security guards and hospital attendants who report for duty at 12 midnight.

"We cannot compromise the safety of passengers. We must also have enough time to maintain our system to avoid accidents," Blancaflor said.

"In order to save the wear and tear of the MRT3 system, the management decided not to operate from 1 a.m. to 4 p.m. but use the time instead for the repair and maintenance of railroad tracks, power and electrical lines," she added.

She also explained that due to the huge losses incurred by the 16.3-kilometer railway system last Monday and Tuesday, MRT3 operation on a 24-hour run was stopped.

From now on, the first train will leave the North Avenue station in Quezon City at 4 a.m., she said.

Last Monday night, the MRT3 earned only P134,000 from 5,346 passengers, while the EDSA-based railway system spent P289,000 for electric cost, aside from giving overtime payment for MRT3 personnel during the night shift.

Blancaflor noted that train stations were empty between 2 a.m. and 4:30 a.m. during the experimental 24-hour operation. (PNA) scs/LOR

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