I fully understand that LTFRB, LTO, MMDA, DOTr are just after the welfare and safety of the Filipinos. But as a mom of four and a wife to a Fil-Am – who is always stressed driving in the Philippines because of your so-called “safer” Jeepneys, buses, and taxis driving like maniacs with broken taillights – I think there’s more than just trying to deprive us of a better transportation system.
This is a rear-end waiting to happen.
Truthfully, most of us Filipinos are easy to deal with: we just want safe, comfort, convenience, and cleanliness. These 3C’s are the reason why even if we have to pay a premium price, we still support it. Such as your initiatives like the P2P buses, UBE Express, they may charge a little higher but you’re comfortably seated and safe.
Momentarily, Grab and Uber could be the “better options” too than your crowded MRT, buses that treat EDSA like a race track, jeepneys that don’t abide by your laws (like the simplest rule of loading in a non-loading zone), and taxi drivers who drive like zombies because they’ve been up for 24 hours just to get by.
Although, not all taxi drivers are as rude as the picture above. There are a few that restored my faith in humanity.
Relatively, starting small doesn’t mean you’re thinking small. Oftentimes, these small issues are the culprits.
So, before you pour your energy in taking Uber/Grab colorum, whatever you call it, get your act together first and work on the little things you should’ve fixed ages ago.
Rule #1: Too many warnings before revoking the license
A few months ago, I had the privilege to join Rappler’s initiative on how do we make Philippine roads safer.
The event was attended by active drivers, influencers, motorcycle groups, private organizations, and a few government officials. Succinctly, people who are hungry for road courtesy were there.
A gentleman raised the issue of how these licenses are being given/revoked to/from drivers. Sadly, there was no strict, strong, and respectable process before issuing the licenses! LTO explained that it takes 4 offenses for reckless driving before they revoke the license.
Case in point: RRCG Transport
This bus hit the Grab I was riding. As usual, we were traversing EDSA going to Sucat. We were in the middle lane and this bus maneuvered from the bus lane to our lane like he didn’t see us.
As a result, poor Grab driver’s side mirror got broken. As usual, the driver tried to settle it by paying the Grab driver with P500. Yes, P500 with matching: “Pasensha na po, namamasada lang din po ako, Ate.”
At that time, there were no MMDA or Police officers to assist us. I had to tweet MMDA and thankfully, they responded after 10 minutes.
I furiously asked for his license. And to my surprise, his license was confiscated because he dropped off a passenger on a “No Loading” zone.
So, therefore, this bus driver was literally still driving without a license! As explained by the LTO official present at Rappler’s dialogue, he explained that before revoking or suspending the license, the driver must accumulate 3 offenses, depending on the gravity of the violation.
The RRCG driver insisted to just settle it by paying the damage in the amount of P2000. I refused. I told the Grab driver to go to the nearest traffic center. So, they ended up going to Mandaluyong Traffic Center. I am not sure if they settled it accordingly or otherwise. I wanted to follow-up but the Grab driver’s number couldn’t be reached anymore. Additionally, there was no decent RRCG contact number for me to call. I thought it’s safer if there’s a franchise? How come I couldn’t contact the number indicated?
Do you know people in the US hate getting busted? Because it’s inconvenient for them to stand in line, go to the court, and points on their insurance. I am hoping with the current administration – since we want to change – it’s about time to be stricter.
Rule #3: There’s no penalty for broken taillights. There’s always rear-end waiting to happen.
Rule #4: Anti-Distracted Law
How about the billboards in EDSA or C5?
Rule 5: Change dilapidated street names and signage
We don’t have a decent signage and warning signs. There are dilapidated street names that should’ve been changed ages ago. I’m not sure if you don’t see these small things or you just choose to ignore it.
Rule #6: Random drug test
If so, how come there are still a good number of public and private drivers fail the test and still drive?
Rule #7: Drunk Driving
How do you determine if the driver is under the influence? After the accident?
And the list goes on.
What you need is a consolidation of concrete rules and regulations that we really NEED. Start from within, clean up the office if you should. Anyway, we all want change, don’t we?
If you were a parent yourself, you’d know how precious time could be. In short, we cannot tolerate lousy rules and regulations no more. Please stop wasting our time trying to understand things that even you yourself don’t understand.
Ultimately, the lack of enforcement is there. You need to come up with a curriculum that these drivers must learn and appreciate. Why don’t we, most importantly, EDUCATE THE DRIVERS. And because the penalties aren’t heavy, drivers tend to brush it off to avoid inconvenience.
You should’ve known or did a study about Uber and Grab before letting them operate.
One thing is certain, we are not all saints. But, we try to pick the lesser of two evils. There’s no easy way to go about it.
Aren’t you tired of these issues?
Tell us your thoughts in the comments.
Disclaimer: “The views and opinions of the writer do not necessarily represent the views and opinions of WhenInManila.com.”