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  • Writer's pictureLeonora Lo-oy

Come and see the 1945 post-war vintage bus in Tabuk City!


Tabuk City, Kalinga – Experience what it is like riding around a bus in the 1940s as Victory Liner brought its 7-decade-old vintage bus to Tabuk City.

 

Said vintage bus restored by the Victory Liner has been going around places in the country since last year to allow people to experience the post-war vehicle. Now it is the chance of the people of Tabuk City to get a glimpse of the bus and have a ‘nostalgic ride’ for free around the city until April 23.

 

This vehicle described to be a Jardinera-type bus body on an International Harvester chassis and engine was built from the ruins of the Japanese occupation in the Philippines.

 

According to the Victory Liner, Inc., their founder, Jose Hernandez Sr. who was also a pre-war mechanic of the Pacific Commercial Company did not actually intend on making a bus, but rather a delivery truck to transport ‘bagoong’, rice, corn, vegetables, and homemade laundry soap from Batangas to Divisoria.

 

Back in 1945, just after World War II, there were not many vehicles left as they had been confiscated and destroyed.

 

For this reason, Hernandez utilized what was left of the war and collected bits and pieces of machinery, metals, and spare parts from abandoned US military cars. Additionally, to complete the vehicle he envisioned, he ordered a truck from Po Chuan, the body assembler.

 

When the supposed truck was finished, Hernandez was described to have been surprised that instead of a delivery truck, the finished product was more like a bus with its low floor, rows of benches, and open sides.

 

After consulting his wife, the pre-war mechanic decided to use the vehicle as a public utility instead of the original plan of using it for delivery.

 

It was on October 15, 1945, that the first Jardinera bus worth P6,000 hit the road through the Manila - Olongapo-Manila route. This also marked the beginning of the now Victory Liner Inc., one of the largest and pioneer buses in the Philippines.

 

To those who wish to catch the vintage bus in Tabuk City, you can go to the Victory Liner Tabuk terminal from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. The viewing of the 7-decade-old vehicle and free ‘nostalgia ride’ in the city will be until April 23.

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