DOST set to deploy hybrid electric road train in General Santos City

The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) said General Santos City in Mindanao is set to test-run the Hybrid Electric Road Train (HERT) developed by Filipino engineers from the Metals Industry Research and Development Center (MIRDC).

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The 40-meter long road train is expected to hit the highways of GenSan this October. It successfully concluded its trial run in Cebu City last February 2017.

The train consists of five interlinked air-conditioned coaches that can hold up to 240 passengers per trip and is expected to provide technological solutions to urban transport concerns like traffic congestion of which General Santos City is currently facing.

It is mainly designed for roads and not for rails thus the Hybrid Electric Road Train (HERT) only run a maximum speed of 50kph.

The DOST regional office, thru its regional director Zenaida Hadji Raof Laidan, has partnered with local government unit of GenSan and DOST MIRDC.

“As part of the preparation of its implementation in General Santos City, DOST MIRDC is conducted series of route-assessment and ocular inspection to ensure viability of using the road train in main roads of the city” said Laidan.

Based on the initial route assessment survey, the HERT will initially start at Barangay Katangawan then it will pass through Lagao Public Market, national highway and city’s circumferential road going to Gensan Fish Port.

“Aside from serving mass number of daily commuters around the city, the HERT also advocates a greener-use of technology as it is powered by electric batteries instead of solely diesel fuel thus creating lesser carbon emission,” she added.

This road train project is being deployed for trial runs to ensure that it meets the standards prior to its complete rollout to urban cities. The field testing of HERT in the road of General Santos City may ease the burden of daily commuters if the city will adopt the technology upon the completion of the trial run.

DOST secretary Fortunato T. de la Peña said the agency may eventually donate the HERT if it is viable and effective solution to the traffic woes of GenSan.

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