Gargantuan tasks
THAT DOES IT - Korina Sanchez (The Freeman) - September 29, 2015 - 10:00am

The Philippine National Police Highway Patrol Group will now tackle two traffic problems that have been ignored for so long. Tricycles and pedicabs will no longer be allowed to travel on EDSA. Those who travel EDSA near the Balintawak market know how these vehicles pose as dangers as well as nuisances on the road, simply because the rules just do not seem to apply to them. They swerve whenever they want to, they counterflow, they pick up and drop off passengers and goods where they want. With the HPG now in charge of traffic, banning these is a step in right direction.

There are actually two existing laws, one as far as 1990 that bans tricycles and the like from major thoroughfares. A follow-up law states that roads that have a road speed of more than forty kilometers per hour are off-limits to these as well. They are relegated to tertiary roads and subdivisions. Obviously, these laws are not being enforced, just like so many other laws. The HPG wants to start enforcing it. It's about time.

There is a reason why they shouldn't be on major roads. They just do not have any kind of safety feature designed into them. This puts both the driver and the passenger at great risk. Even the helmet law is not enforced on drivers. In the event of an accident, the chances of survival for both driver and passenger are slim. The fact that many of these tricycle drivers are insolent, arrogant, disrespectful and totally ignorant of traffic laws does not help.

Another gargantuan task is enforcing Ortigas Ave. as a no-parking zone. We all know how Ortigas Ave. turns into a parking lot during dismissal hours of La Salle Greenhills. Cars occupy at least three or more lanes of the road, thereby creating a monstrous traffic. But the HPG has its work cut out for them. It is no secret that many students of La Salle are children of wealthy and influential parents. Banning parking will surely stir up a hornet's nest. I haven't yet heard of any scheme from La Salle or the HPG by which drivers can pick up their wards once the no-parking policy is strictly enforced.

Here lies the problem of schools in general. Student population has practically exponentially increased over the years, but the sizes of their respective campuses have remained the same. School buses have also disappeared in favor of the smaller school service vans. Imagine how many cars can be removed from the road if school buses were still in fashion. But the horrendous traffic has simply made them extinct.

It will be interesting to see if the HPG can successfully enforce these two traffic laws. If they do, then kudos to them. I would like to see the ban on tricycles and pedicabs cover other major roads like Quezon Ave., Aurora Blvd., Katipunan Ave., Santolan and the like. There are just too many of them on public roads, and they just add to the already stressful act of driving.

korina_abs@yahoo.com.

AURORA BLVD BALINTAWAK HPG KATIPUNAN AVE LA SALLE LA SALLE GREENHILLS ORTIGAS AVE PHILIPPINE NATIONAL POLICE HIGHWAY PATROL GROUP QUEZON AVE SANTOLAN TRAFFIC
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