Time and again, reminders have been given to the motoring public that the EDSA busway is strictly off-limits for all other vehicles except for buses (obviously), ambulances, or marked government vehicles responding to emergencies. A video has since gone viral after enforcers of the Inter-Agency Council for Traffic or I-ACT alighted from a bus and apprehended violators traversing the bus lane. Since then a drop in the daily count of apprehensions has been seen.
EDSA Busway is not for private vehicles and motorcycles
This past Monday, I-ACT Chief Charlie Del Rosario said in a Laging Handa Press Briefing that the average number of apprehensions for violating the EDSA Busway was 400 per day. Since the sting operations of I-ACT, that has dropped to about 100 per day.
“[Sila] ay puwedeng pagmultahin ng aabot ng isang libo. Ang mga nahuling ito ay na-submit na rin natin sa Land Transportation Office (LTO) para ma-impose iyong kaukulang multa [They can be fined up to PHP 1,000. And these apprehended individuals are reported to the LTO where they can settle their fine],” Del Rosario said.
Alongside being fined for violating the bus lane, motorists will be tagged with “demerit” points in the LTO’s system. Depending on the total accrued demerits, a motorist may be barred from being eligible for a 10-year validity for his or her Driver’s License. Should the total of demerit points reach 40, though, that will be equivalent to the suspension of the motorist’s Driver’s License.
One of the most common reasons (or excuses) given for plying the bus lane is that it is “faster”. Despite the abundance of signs that indicate the lane’s exclusivity, motorists still choose to ignore the law. “Sa totoo, wala namang trapik. Hindi lang natin malaman kung bakit nagpipilit silang dumaan diyan [Truth be told, there’s no traffic. We don’t understand why they keep taking the EDSA busway],” he said.
Regardless of any reason, those found illegally traversing the bus lane will be apprehended and issued tickets.
One would think that an unfortunate accident involving a motorcycle and private vehicle violating the EDSA Busway law will sway motorists away from it, but sadly, that is not the case. It is both humorous and deplorable to see the long queue of vehicles that were apprehended in the said viral video, but in all honesty, it was bound to happen. Come on, you know you’re breaking the law, did you really expect that the long arm of the law won’t catch up to you?
Let this be a lesson learned, ladies and gentlemen. Whether by an enforcer from I-ACT or MMDA, they will apprehend you if you’re in the wrong. Don’t wait until you do to follow a simple rule, yes?