LRT-2 resumes operations hours after suspension due to Santolan station fire

Published October 8, 2020, 3:22 PM

by Alexandria Dennise San Juan

The Light Rail Transit Line 2 (LRT-2) resumed its operations on Thursday afternoon, hours after it was suspended following a fire that broke out in the electrical room of one of its closed stations.

(MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO)

The Light Rail Transit Authority (LRTA) said trips from Recto to Cubao stations resumed in service as of 2:21 p.m. 

“We apologize for this unfortunate incident. LRT-2 now resumes safe train operations after exploring the necessary options,” LRTA Administrator Gen. Reynaldo Berroya said in a statement.

The management halted the line’s operations as a precautionary measure and to conduct an inspection after a fire hit the concourse area of Santolan Station around 5:10 a.m.

Read more: Santolan station fire halts LRT-2 operations

While no injuries were reported, initial findings showed that the blaze burned and damaged the station’s uninterruptible power supply (UPS) which is necessary to provide power to the rail line’s emergency equipment in case of power fluctuation or interruption.

“With the link of the signaling system severed from the Control Center, we cannot safely operate the trains hence the constraint to suspend train operations,” LRTA Spokesperson Hernando Cabrera told Manila Bulletin.

According to the LRTA, several multi-year modernization and rehabilitation projects are underway including the replacement of UPS at all stations.

Meanwhile, Berroya ordered a thorough investigation on the matter to identify the cause of the fire and to implement necessary measures to ensure that the incident will not recur.

Operations from Santolan to Anonas stations have been suspended since October last year after a fire damaged two rectifier substations in Katipunan and Anonas. The resumption of the railway’s full operations was initially set in June but was delayed as community lockdowns slowed down repairs.

The 13.8-kilometer long LRT-2 is servicing around 5 million passengers in a month with trains running across 11 stations from Santolan in Marikina City to Recto in Manila when fully operational. 

However, the LRTA said that the number of train riders was reduced to at least 450,000 monthly due to limited operations brought by the shut down of the three eastern stations and lesser passenger capacity to observe social distancing protocols amid the pandemic.

Opened in 2003, the LRT-2 is the latest to become operational among the current LRTA monorails and has the shortest routes among the existing railway systems in the country and the main mode of transportation for commuters with destinations along Aurora Boulevard, Araneta Avenue, Marcos Highway, Magsaysay Boulevard, Legarda and Recto Avenue.

 
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