Modern PUVs have been in and around the metro for quite some time now, it has been a major push from agencies like the LTFRB to modernize a vital part of our aging transport system.
Unfortunately, it has been a slow process, despite an influx of new PUVs it seems they aren’t enough for our recovering workforce and economy. This has led to some unforeseen problems like long lines at bus stops and even overloading, the latter of which has caused quite a stir recently.
LTFRB “No to overloading”
A viral video circulating social media has come to the attention of the agency, wherein a modern jeepney that was packed down to the last inch caused a passenger to faint while in transit.
The incident prompted the regulatory agency to hand out a show-cause order to Easyway Transport Service and Multipurpose Cooperative so that they can properly explain why they shouldn’t be suspended or lose their Certificate of Public Convenience (CPC) or franchise for violating the overloading rule.
The show cause order dictates that the operator should show up to a hearing by February 16, 2023, and they only have 5 days to respond to the order itself. “Failure to provide an answer and non-appearance in the case hearing will be deemed a waiver on the part of the respondent to be heard, and the case will be decided based on the Board’s records,” says the show cause order.
According to the LTFRB the maximum capacity of the modern PUVs are 28 passengers only, 23 sitting down and 5 standing up. Chairman Guadiz has once again given a warning to operators to follow the rules and regulations especially since Covid-19 is still an issue that plagues our nation.
“This means that PUVs should still observe proper distancing in terms of the number of passengers they can accommodate. Thus, overloading should not be allowed under any circumstance,” said Guadiz.
“Pandemic or not, overloading is dangerous and should not be practiced by PUV drivers just for them to earn money and meet their boundary. No amount of money can equate to the safety of passengers, especially now that COVID-19 is still here,” Guadiz added.
As much as we all want and need more modern PUVs to alleviate the plight of commuters, operators should be mindful enough to know when too much is just too much, especially when lives are at stake.