Angkas may deny rides to ‘heavy passengers’ to ensure safety

Aileen Cerrudo   •   January 9, 2020   •   439

Ride-hailing app Angkas will require passengers to provide their weight information and may deny rides to “heavy passengers” to ensure safety of both the biker and their riders.

Angkas’ new requirement is to comply with the government guidelines on motorcycle safety. The weight safety check will be required to match the passengers with the right biker.

“Government guidelines on motorcycle safety requires us to ensure small bikers with small bikes are not paired with passengers they may not be able to ferry,” Angkas said.—AAC

Recto confident Duterte will support motorcycle taxi bill

Robie de Guzman   •   February 19, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Senate President Pro-Tempore Ralph Recto has expressed confidence that President Rodrigo Duterte will sign into law the proposed Motorcycle Taxi Bill, which seeks to lift the 56-year ban on two-wheelers as a public utility vehicle (PUV).

In his speech sponsoring Senate Bill No. 1341 Tuesday — which proposes to legalize motorcycle taxis such as Angkas, JoyRide and MoveIt — Recto referred to Duterte’s fondness for motorcycles, saying this had shown the motorbike as a safe ride.

“The motorbike is the ride of choice of the President,” he said.

“So, what is good for the president must be good for the ordinary citizen,” he added, before laying down the stringent conditions on how to make for-hire motorcycles “safe for the driver, for the passenger, and for the other vehicles on the road.”

The measure seeks to amend Republic Act 4136 or the Land Transportation and Tariff Code, which prohibits the use of motorcycles as public transport.

The proposal defines motorcycles-for-hire as any two-wheeled motor vehicle registered with the Land Transportation Office, which transports passengers and goods on a for-hire basis, and which may utilize online ride-hailing or pre-arranged transportation platforms.

The bill states that the motorcycle should weigh less than 1,000 kilograms, can travel faster than 50 kilometers per hour, has a minimum engine displacement of 125 cubic centimeters, and a backbone-type built.

Along with the vehicle registration, the motorcycles for hire will also be required to secure a certificate of public convenience or a special permit issued by the LTFRB.

The measure also states that motorcycle taxis fall under a classification of public utility automobiles along with public utility trucks, taxis and auto-calesas, garage automobiles, hire trucks and trucks owned by contractor and customs brokers and customs agents.

Recto urged his fellow legislators to pass the bill.

The Senate committees on public services and the local government earlier approved a committee report allowing the use of motorcycle taxis as a form of public transport in the country.

DOTr-TWG: Pilot test run of motorcycle taxis to continue

Maris Federez   •   January 22, 2020

Members of the Riders of the Philippines (ROTP) advocacy group stage a protest motorcade to demonstrate against a ban on using motorbikes in ride-sharing platforms in Quezon City (Metro Manila), the Philippines, 16 December 2018. EPA-EFE FILE/FRANCIS R. MALASIG

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Transportation-Technical Working Group (DOTr-TWG) will not be pushing through with its plan to stop the pilot test run of motorcycle taxis in Metro Manila and Cebu following a meeting with concerned stakeholders on the new policies set by the government.

Motorcycle taxis can still operate with no fear of getting apprehended by authorities until the three-month pilot test run ends on March 23.

The decision was issued following an executive session of the DOTr-TWG officials with representatives of motorcycle taxi companies at the House of Representatives on Wednesday (Jan. 22).

“Sabi namin we are considering all sentiments yung recommendations that’s why we came up to this adding of area of study and the raising of the cap,” said DOTr-TWG chief Antonio Gardiola.

They also agreed to raise the cap of motorcycle taxi units that will be allowed to operate from 39,000 to 63,000, and to include Cagayan de Oro in the rest run.

Metro Manila will have a limit of 45,000 motorcycle taxi units in operation; while Cebu and CDO will have 9,000 each.

Angkas, JoyRide, and Move It will have an equal share of these numbers.

Meanwhile, Angkas has promised to withdraw the charges it filed before the court against the guidelines set by the government on motorcycle taxis.

“We are now in the spirit of collaboration we spoke with the secretary yesterday..we also headed to the opinions of the senators and on the good congressmen today […] hopefully we can get the success of the pilot for the necessary law to be passed,” Angkas Chief Transport Advocate George Royeca said.

The DOTr-TWG has likewise withdrawn its recommendation to blacklist Angkas in the pilot test run.

The agency has earlier recommended the termination of the pilot test run of motorcycle taxis due to the charges that Angkas filed.

The registration of motorcycle taxis is ongoing, while the TWG and concerned parties decide on its deadline.

The TWG will still not allow entry of new motorcycle taxi companies until the end of the pilot test run. — (from the report of Joan Nano) /mbmf

DOTr-TWG to terminate pilot run for motorcycle taxis

Robie de Guzman   •   January 20, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Motorcycle taxis will be considered illegal and will not be allowed to operate starting next week, a transport official said Monday.

Department of Transportation’s (DOTr) inter-agency Technical Working Group (TWG) chairperson and Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) member Antonio Gardiola said this is after submitting their recommendation to terminate the pilot run for motorcycle ride-hailing operations in the country.

“We submitted our recommendation to Congress this morning. This was favorably endorsed by our secretary, Secretary Arthur Tugade,” Gardiola said in an interview with reporters before a Senate hearing on bills seeking to regulate motorcycle taxis.

Gardiola explained they recommended the immediate termination of the implementation of the pilot study as they will not be able to gather data for analysis due to a legal case filed by one of the players.

“It’s really very significant but then it’s also half of the three months yung study natin. We cannot gather data because of the legal impediments,” he said.

“We are resorting to legal rigmarole sa nangyayaring ito. Bale nag-file sila ng kaso so nai-impede ang study… We cannot gather data because of actions being undertaken by one of the players so it is better to terminate it,” he added.

The implementation of the pilot run was approved in aid of legislation for both the House of Representatives and the Senate to evaluate pending bills pushing for the legalization of motorcycles as public utility vehicles, as well as amendment of existing laws such as Republic Act No. 4136 or the Land Transportation and Traffic Code.

The pilot test, which started in May 2019, was initially set to end on December 26 but was extended with two new players – JoyRide and MoveIt.

The extension was supposed to end on March 23, 2020

A cap of 39,000 registered bikers – 10,000 bikers per Transport Network Company (TNC) for Metro Manila and 3,000 bikers each TNC for Metro Cebu operations – was also set.

Angkas questioned the set limit, and claimed there was politics involved in the inclusion of JoyRide in the pilot run.

The firm last week secured temporary restraining orders against the cap on riders.

Gardiola said with the recommendation termination of the pilot run, motorcycle taxis will no longer be allowed to operate.

“Iligal silang lahat kasi they are drawing their authority to run motorcycle because of the study. We know there is a law covering this, Republic Act 4136, it says that motorcycles are still considered as a private mode of transportation,” he said.

The LTFRB official said they will start the enforcement next week.

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