Ilagan City to fabricate hybrid road train

By Ma. Cristina Arayata

August 11, 2021, 6:02 pm

<p>(<em>PNA file photo by Joseph Razon</em>)</p>

(PNA file photo by Joseph Razon)

MANILA – Ilagan City in Isabela province will soon fabricate the Department of Science Technology (DOST)-developed Hybrid Electric Road Train (HERT), and use this as an alternative mode of transportation.

In a virtual signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on Wednesday, DOST Secretary Fortunato de la Peña said it was Ilagan City Mayor Josemarie Diaz who expressed interest to adapt the HERT, to utilize it as an alternative mode of transport for front-liners, community outreach activities, among others.

The city also aims to enhance the skills of students through the fabrication of HERT.

"Through HERT, (the) DOST hopes to serve the best interest of the people in Ilagan City, particularly on its need for an environment-friendly mass transportation facility. It can be a great complement to the existing public transportation system in Ilagan. Also, during this time of the pandemic, HERT can be used by the front-liners, especially during lockdowns, when there is limited public transport," he said.

De la Peña said a consortium in Isabela will do the fabrication.

"HERT can also help (Isabela) grow economically. The fabrication of HERT in the province would actually help its local manufacturing industry and economy. It can provide job opportunities for engineers and manufacturers," he remarked.

Developed by the engineers of DOST's Metals Industry Research and Development Center (MIRDC), HERT is 40 meters long, with five interlinked coaches.

Earlier, the DOST said the HERT could accommodate 220 passengers per coach.

"It was called 'hybrid' because instead of just running on diesel fuel, HERT is also powered by electric batteries, therefore creating lesser carbon emission compared to vehicles that run purely on gasoline or diesel," he said, adding that HERT can help Ilagan City to be a greener and very livable city.

Meanwhile, also part of the MOU signing is the Isabela State University (ISU), which will conduct research and activities that will be useful for HERT.

The MIRDC will provide technical information to the fabricators, subject to a signing of a non-disclosure agreement. On the other hand, DOST-Region II will commission for the feasibility study of HERT's viable network (train stations, road space provisions), fare system, transport passenger flow.

The Ilagan government will identify possible routes, and address possible infrastructure needs such as road widening. (PNA