22 December 2013

Expect Long Queuing in MRT Stations

MRT Queue
Surprise to see long queuing in several Metro Rail Transit (MRT) stations? Don't be. It might be the usual scene from now on if the MRT management will have their way.

The long line is a result of an experimental system wherein only batches of 500 people are allowed to ride the train at a time, explained MRT General Manager Al Vitangcol III.

Why the number was pegged at 500, nobody can tell. Why it was implemented during the Christmas holiday rush, is mind-boggling as well. Hence, it is not surprising to hear commuters riding the MRT everyday complain about the new crowd control procedure which was implemented by the management last 16 December 2013.

According to reports, the line of passengers waiting for train rides this morning stretched to about half a kilometer.

In a phone interview with DZMM, Vitangcol explained this was done so that passengers waiting in succeeding stations will also have the chance to board the trains.

"Nag-implement kasi tayo ng bagong crowd control procedure. Nagsimula ito nung Lunes. Ang ginawa natin sa North Avenue station e ginawa nating by batch ang allowed lang na maghintay doon sa mismong platform doon sa mismong istasyon ng tren ay 500 people. Kapag nakasakay na yung 500 people sa dumating na tren, saka pa lang nating ia-allow na umakyat ang next 500 people," he said.

Vitangcol said the new system will discourage commuters from flocking to the starting point of the train route which is North Avenue for South-bound passengers.

"Ang nangyayari kasi dati, yung mga pasahero galing sa ibang istasyon sa kagustuhang makasakay pumupunta dito lahat sa North Avenue station kaya nagkaka ipon ipon dito," he noted.

He added, "Ang ginawa natin ay equal distribution sa lahat ng station. Ang nakakasakay limang daan, so kalahating capacity ng tren magpupuno ito sa mga susunod na istasyon. Yung ibang mga pasahero natin na naghihintay sa Quezon Ave, Kamuning, lahat ito mabibigyan ng pare parehong pagkakataong makasakay. Hindi na nila kailangang pumunta pa sa North Avenue station."

He noted that they conducted dry-runs before the full implementation of the new procedure and they observed improvement in the flow of passengers.