With public utility buses, jeeps and light railway systems always at full capacity during rush hours, the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) recently tested the Department of Science and Technology's (DOST) new hybrid road train that is aimed at providing an alternative means of public transportation.
Compared to traditional buses, DOST's hybrid road trains has five coaches that can each accommodate 60 passengers. In addition, each hybrid road train is constructed with environmentally-friendly materials that are all Filipno-made.
Providing the necessary propulsion for the hybrid road train is a diesel powerplant that is assisted by an electric generator and battery.
Present during the road testing of the prototype public transportation vehicles are DILG Secretary Mar Roxas and DOST Secretary Mario Montejo.
"Higit sa pangkaraniwan, higit sa laman ng pangkaraniwang bus ang masasakay dito. Ang kagandahan nito ay articulated siya, so ibig sabihin ay isang operator, halos pito ang mga nakakabit na mga bagon o mga bus," said Roxas.
["These are not typical buses that can only hold a number of passengers. The beauty of it is that each one is articulated, meaning that a single operator can almost have 7 coaches in one bus,"]
Roxas also added that the automotive parts of the hybrid road trains were taken from bus parts instead of sourcing it from trains which would make for easier maintenance for the operators.
Both Roxas and Montejo are already discussing deployment to major thoroughfares like EDSA, Roxas Boulevard, Taft Avenue and Quezon Boulevard.
The DILG Secretary is excited at the prospect of the hybrid road trains though he admitted that the system could use a few more improvments.
"Malaki future nito. Sa ngayon ito yung pangalawang prototype, medyo pulido na. Siguro isa pang prototype ay talagang perfect na ito at mako-commercialize na," said Roxas.
["This has a big future. For now, this second prototype is already polished. Maybe another prototype will make things perfect and we will be able to commercialize it,"]