Strong government anti-colorum efforts bag PHP 18M in fines for February so far

The government’s battle against colorum vehicles continues. To this day, the LTFRB, LTO, and DOTr take to the streets to rid them of vehicles illegally “posing” as mass transit PUVs. Before the end of 2023, efforts have been more than doubled and penalties have been consistently meted out. In February – and the month isn’t even over yet – alone, PHP 18,000,000 was collected following the apprehensions made.

Fines await apprehended colorum vehicles

Dotr Ltfrb Lto Anti Colorum Feb 2024 Php 18m Inline 01 Min

Photo: Department of Transportation

Following the efforts of the parent agencies and the groundwork of the Special Action and Intelligence Committee for Transportation (DOTr-SAICT), colorum vehicles that include vans, buses, and other PUVs were apprehended this month. 50 were pulled over and accosted for their violation of the law and these translated to, from February 1-22, 2024, a total of PHP 18M in fines.

Dotr Ltfrb Lto Anti Colorum Feb 2024 Php 18m Inline 02 Min

Photo: Department of Transportation

Describing the efforts as “relentless”, the SAICT works closely with the LTO and has played an integral part in the apprehension of colorum vehicles on the roads. We can remember that many “enterprising” individuals have come up with many ways to operate this type of illegal public transport service, using government vehicles and even ambulances to turn over a quick peso or two by taking passengers to and from their destinations. Only permitted PUVs with franchises can legally do this, and those without can expect a significant cash fine.

Vans that engage in this practice are slapped with a PHP 200,000 penalty, and buses with an eye-watering PHP 1,000,000 fine. Given these numbers, PHP 18M is a figure that isn’t too difficult to hit given the number of colorum vehicles out there.

Dotr Ltfrb Lto Anti Colorum Feb 2024 Php 18m Inline 03 Min

Photo: Department of Transportation

At the head of all these operations is DOTr Secretary Jaime Bautista. The use of unauthorized public transportation poses a threat to passenger safety and security, and these are what Bautista and the agencies under his wing aim to protect. The Secretary confidently foresees more of these illegal operations and more unregistered vehicles to be flagged down with all their continuous efforts.

The battle has been long and arduous, and with not too many options for mass public transportation, the commuting public had to look for and turn to alternative means to get around. Yes, there is no questioning the illegality of colorum, and that the welfare of commuters is put at risk by opting for this means of transportation, but it’s on that same token that all eyes are on the government to provide safer, convenient, and more dependable modes of transportation for everyone.

The operations continue, and so does everyone’s wait for better and legal options.

Mikko Juangco
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