23 February 2014
|37 units of 4X4 ARFF Strikers will be distributed to CAAP Airports handling narrowbody jets across the country|
America wins the bid for 41 units of brand new Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF) vehicle intended to augment rescue capabilities of major commercial airports managed by Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP).
The ARFF procurement was part of the International Civil Authority Organization (ICAO) recommendations to improve safety standards of Philippine Airports which were found to be inadequate.
The original bid was won by Spanish firm Iturri S. A. and Protec Fire S. A., which offered the lowest bid but was subsequently disqualified for failure to comply with the requirement that the chassis of its fire engines should be noncommercial.
"The issue there was the chassis of the fire trucks, very clear in TOR, it should be customized chassis. I spoke to BAC chair it was clear in the papers submitted by Iturri that they were going to use commercial chassis," Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya said.
Abaya explained further that Iturri and its partners failed to follow the procurement law.
Meanwhile, CAAP Director General William K. Hotchkiss lll said the deployment of the new ARFF is part of the upgrading of the Emergency Services Unit of CAAP on all major airports in the country to comply with the International Civil Authority Organization (ICAO), Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), and the European Union (EU) international aviation standards for aircraft and rescue fighting requirements.
|4 units of 6X6 ARFF Strikers will be distributed to CAAP-managed International Airports across the country|
Four groups participated in the bidding, but only two passed procedural and eligibility requirements – Iturri and US-based Oshkosh.
Iturri submitted the lowest bid of P984.2 million, below CAAP's approved budget of P1.239.5 billion, while Oshkosh gave an offer of P1.163.89 million.
However, while the Spanish company submitted the lowest bid, it failed to pass the post-qualification evaluation done by the committee in July as Iturri's fire trucks did not comply with the TOR, which called for "custom" or non-commercial chassis.
CAAP BAC chairman retired Brig. Gen. Rodante Joya said Iturri's trucks had commercial chassis, whose width of 2.55 meters did not comply with the ICAO- and FAA-accepted width of 3 meters, and whose tires were "narrower", and may tilt over when running at high speed.
CAAP operates 81 airports across the country with 41 airports handling commercial flights. These commercial airports have a consolidated inventory of 97 fire trucks but only 80 units are working while 17 units were out of commission due to spare parts supply problems arising from obsolescence.
Some of the well maintained ARFF have acquisition date as far as year 1968 while bulk of the equipments existing are acquired at the time of President Ramos almost 20 years ago. Three ARFF vehicle (2x 6,000 and 1x 13,000 liters) were added to the inventory in 2013.