PNR acquiring China trains for Bicol line

The Philippine National Railways is acquiring new trains from CRRC Zhuzhou Locomotive Co. Ltd. of China for the South Long Haul project, also known as PNR Bicol.

PNR general manager Junn Magno and CRRC Locomotive vice president Wang Qiaolin signed the contract for the procurement of the standard gauge diesel multiple unit trains. The signing was witnessed by Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade and Undersecretary for railways Timothy John Batan.

CRRC Zhuzhou Locomotive was declared the winning project bidder for the delivery of standard gauge DMU trains to the PNR on Oct. 23, 2019. 

“This is a very momentous occasion for us because this is where we will start the railway service and transform the Philippine National Railways,” Magno said. 

“This train will represent the first trip for the South Long Haul Project or what we call the PNR Bicol and it would cut down significantly by 80 percent the travel time between Manila and the Bicol region,” he said.

The project consists of three train sets of three-car formations. These train sets, which are set to arrive in the country by June 2021, will be initially deployed for long haul service from Calamba, Laguna to Naga City, Camarines Sur and eventually to Legazpi City, Albay.

Tugade said the trains will have three types of accommodation, including business class, first class and second class. The trains can accommodate 168 passengers with 36 seats for business class, 52 seats for first class and 80 seats for second class.

PNR used to cover 479 kilometers of tracks from Manila to Bicol until it stopped operation in 2014 because of the right-of-way issues and lack of trains.

PNR deployed six brand-new diesel multiple unit rail cars from Indonesia last week that increased  the capacity of PNR to 73,500 passengers a day from the previous 60,000 passengers. 

Manufactured by Indonesian company PT-INKA, the six brand-new DMU train cars were converted into two train sets of three railcars each. They are expected to add 18 to 20 more trips per day on the line’s routes from Tutuban (Manila) to FTI (Taguig City) and from Malabon to FTI. Darwin G. Amojelar 

The PNR’s metro line runs from Tutuban in Manila to Los Baños, Laguna.

Topics: Philippine National Railways , PNR , China trains , Bicol line , CRRC Zhuzhou Locomotive Co. Ltd. of China
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