RIDING INCOGNITO. Transportation Secretary Jaime Bautista interacts with a passenger aboard a Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT-3) train on Monday (July 4, 2022). Bautista reported his surprise inspection of the rail line during the first Cabinet meeting of President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. at Malacañan Palace. (Photo courtesy of DOTr)

MANILA – Transportation Secretary Jaime Bautista has made recommendations on further improving the services of the Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT-3) after a surprise inspection of the rail line on Monday.

In a Facebook post on Tuesday, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) said Bautista rode incognito without the usual entourage and interacted with passengers from GMA Kamuning Station to Taft Avenue Station.

Aside from inspecting the MRT-3, it said the visit allowed Bautista to “experience first-hand” how to commute using mass transport system.

Despite the MRT-3’s decision to end free ride program, passengers told Bautista that they will continue to ride the MRT-3, noting that the discomfort of long lines were offset by a “fast and comfortable ride.”

According to the DOTr, Bautista reported his experience during the first Cabinet meeting of President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. at Malacañang on Tuesday and included suggestions for its improvement.

“Copies of Bautista’s observations and recommendations were given to Undersecretary for Rails Cesar Chavez and Ofelia Astrera, OIC-General Manager of MRT-3,” it said.

Some of Bautista’s observations include: clean restrooms with ample water supply; need to add platform waiting seats for senior citizens, persons with disabilities, and pregnant women; accessibility of consumer welfare desks to all passengers, and additional X-ray machines.

He also noted a need for a full ticket counter complement, availability of emergency medical technicians at all stations, promotion of stored value tickets instead of single journey tickets to reduce lines, and enhancements in onboard announcements. (PNA)