SAFETY MUST BE ENSURED
Mr Deddy Herlambang, deputy head of road and rail at Jakarta-based NGO Indonesian Transportation Society, highlights that the HSR is still not certified.
“All facilities and infrastructure such as telecommunications, electricity … they need to be certified. As far as I know, all of them are currently not certified because there is no unit at the ministry of transport in charge of high-speed rail certification since it is new.
“So they hire an independent consultant to work on the certification because we also do not have regulations on HSR. Therefore, they will use the international standard,” he said.
Mr Risal Wasal, director general of railways at the ministry of transport, told CNA that all trains in Indonesia must have a permit in order to operate.
“They can get this permit if they meet all the technical and administrative requirements in Indonesia.
“That means also the human resources must be certified and undergo trials,” he said.
Mr Wasal said the ministry is working with an independent assessor that will review the trials.
“We could also possibly approve the result of the HSR tryout in Indonesia given by China, so there are two options to ensure the trains are safe,” he said.
He added that the safety of passengers – from arriving at the station to exiting the train – will be guaranteed.
“Meaning we will provide safety facilities so that no passenger would be harmed,” he said.
He admits that everything is still being tested and is yet to be certified.
“We should be able to get the certificates and operating permit before August,” he opined.
In the beginning, the train drivers would be experienced personnel from China, as the Indonesian workers must first gain the skills and knowledge to operate the system, Mr Wasal revealed.
As authorities rush to complete the project ahead of its soft launch in August and its October timeline, Ms Kartinah in Padalarang confesses she is happy that Indonesia will have the HSR.
“As an Indonesian, I think the HSR is good because Indonesia and its next generation would be more advanced. Technology-wise, it means we are keeping up with the times.
“Hopefully, with the high-speed train, people would have more access to public transport and shorten commuting time. But it must be affordable to us, the little people,” she said as authorities have yet to announce the ticket price.