LTO wants all e-bikes registered, riders to secure license

Romina Cabrera - The Philippine Star
LTO wants all e-bikes registered, riders to secure license
E-trikes are seen plying along Taft Avenue in Manila on February 3, 2024
Ernie Penaredondo

MANILA, Philippines — The Land Transportation Office (LTO) is eyeing mandatory registration for all light electric vehicles and to require drivers to get licenses if they are to ply the vehicle on any public road nationwide.

The possibility follows the lead of Metro Manila governments that passed regulations on e-bikes, e-trikes and other light electric vehicles on major thoroughfares.

“Our proposal is very simple. As far as the LTO is concerned, all light electric vehicles used in public highways, which means all roads maintained by the government, must be registered with the LTO and the driver must be licensed,” LTO chief Vigor Mendoza said during a consultation with stakeholders.

He added that electric vehicles are subject to regulations set by Republic Act 4136, or the Land Transportation and Traffic Code.

While Mendoza noted that the plan is easier said than done, the LTO has to exercise its regulatory powers to keep the roads safe. If it pushes through, this would replace the government policy that only requires the registration of motorized vehicles that can go beyond 25 kilometers per hour.

“RA 4136 says if it is a motorized vehicle, then that vehicle must be registered with the LTO and the person driving it must be duly licensed. It does distinguish the vehicle speed,” he said.

The LTO currently has seven categories for light electric vehicles, which are defined as motor vehicles with less than four wheels and have restrictions on maximum speed between 25-50 kph and maximum mass – these vehicles are typically used by mothers and individuals for short rides to markets and schools.

Mendoza said minors should not be allowed to drive these vehicles, although this is becoming a more common occurrence.

The Metro Manila Council earlier issued a resolution outlining the rules and regulations, including the imposition of fines, to govern the use of e-bicycles, e-tricycles, kuliglig and e-scooters on public roads.

The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority also issued Regulation 24-022 series of 2024 to ban e-vehicles along major roads, such as the circumferential roads Recto Avenue or C-1, Quirino Avenue or C-2, Araneta Avenue or C-3, EDSA or C-5, Katipunan Avenue and C. P. Garcia Avenue or C-5 and Southeast Metro Manila Expressway or C-6.

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