By Denise A. Valdez

THE Light Rail Transit Authority (LRTA) said it is forming a team to investigate the collision on Saturday evening of two trains on the Light Rail Transit-Line 2 (LRT-2), an accident in which more than 30 were injured.

In a joint statement with the Department of Transportation (DoTr) Sunday, the LRTA said Administrator Reynaldo I. Berroya has ordered the formation of a fact-finding committee that will study the cause of the collision.

“The (DoTr) and (LRTA) offer our sincerest apologies to all passengers affected by (Saturday’s) incident at the LRT-2 between Cubao and Anonas Stations… The DoTr and LRTA assure the public that we are taking this incident very seriously, and are exerting all efforts to prevent this kind of incident from happening again,” the statement went.

A total of 30 passengers and four LRT-2 personnel were injured after a Santolan Station-bound train collided with a parked train on the same line between Cubao and Anonas Stations.

DoTr Assistant Secretary for Communications Goddes Hope O. Libiran explained a defective train had been parked in a pocket track — or the portion of the LRT-2 railway at the side or at the center near a station — since Saturday afternoon, when it suddenly moved to enter the eastbound track going to Cubao.

LRTA Communications Head Evelyn Janeo said in a phone call the driver inside the defective train had to jump out as the train was “beyond his control.”

When the train moving on the eastbound track, the driver of the approaching train which was carrying passengers was advised to go on full stop. But because the defective train was still moving, it eventually collided with the approaching train. “For unknown reasons nag-move yung train, dire-diretso siya hanggang sa mabangga niya ‘yung kasalubong niya, which is unusual din,” Ms. Janeo said, explaining that accident.

She said the fact-finding committee will release a report at the soonest time possible. Meanwhile, LRT-2 operations are back to normal.

The LRT-2 has eight trains running daily, including the two that crashed Saturday. The LRTA is targeting their repair as of this weekend to bring them back to operation within the week.