MANILA, Philippines – A heavy traffic situation without altercation.
Vehicles of various types clogged the South Luzon Expressway (SLEx) during the weekend as individuals and groups ferried relief goods to residents affected by the eruption of the Taal Volcano.
The weekend traffic reached up to 12 kilometers with volunteers patiently waiting for hours for their vehicles to move to various evacuation centers across Batangas province.
The situation prompted the SLEx management to activate zipper lanes towards Calamba Toll Plaza to ease the situation.
According to SLEx Skyway president, Manuel Bonoan, motorists took advantage of the free toll at Calamba Toll Plaza and caused traffic jams.
Bonoan noted that to avail of the privilege, motorists need to coordinate with their office first to be confirmed and to advise their intended destination or recipients.
“Medyo nagkaroon yata ng confusion kahapon at gusto yata lahat na may marka ang mga sasakyan kahit ballpen lang na nakalagay sa bond paper (There seemed to have been a confusion yesterday. Motorists were insisting that their vehicles be marked. They were arguing that a note on a piece of paper would do),” Bonoan explained.
“Wala naman kaming sinasabihan na mga toll plazas na ganun. Kawawa naman ang toll teller dahil siya ang magbabayad sa toll fee kapag hindi approve ang pagdaan ng sasakyan (We do not allow that at our toll plazas. The toll tellers would have to pay the toll of unapproved vehicles that pass),” he added.
Bonoan clarified that there is no end date for the free toll on SLEx Skyway and Star Toll Plaza for government-run vehicles and private groups heading to deliver goods to Batangas provided that their trips are properly coordinated with their office.
Meanwhile, #Slex trended on Saturday as netizens hailed the display of “bayanihan” spirit that the heavy traffic situation reflected.
MANILA, Philippines – The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) will conduct a simulation of traffic in preparation for the Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games) that the Philippines will host on November 30.
The MMDA warns motorists and the riding public to expect heavy traffic and inconvenience.
The simulation of the supposed convoy of athletes and delegates of the SEA Games will take place from 1:00 to 4:00 in the afternoon on Thursday (November 14).
From the different hotels in Tagaytay, Pasay, Manila, Subic, and Clark in Pampanga, the convoy will pass through EDSA, other major thoroughfares in Metro Manila, and the North Luzon Expressway until it reaches the venue for the opening of the SEA Games in Bulacan.
Affected areas are the northbound lanes of EDSA, as well as on Mindanao Avenue, North Avenue, Quirino Highway, Taft Avenue, Magallanes, and the South Luzon Expressway (SLEX).
MMDA spokesperson Asec. Celine Pialago said they will implement the Stop and GO Scheme in the affected thoroughfares in Metro Manila.
“Asahan po natin na magkakaroon ng traffic build up. May konting pagtigil sa regular na pagdaloy ng trapiko kasi di naman natin pwedeng itigil yung traffic kapag nandiyan na yung convoy eh. Centralized yung command. At least kapag malapit na ititigil mo na so magtataka yung mga kababayan natin bakit kami tinitigil? So ibig sabihin po nun may paparating pong convoy pero paglagpas po nung convoy rest assured back to normal na po yung traffic,” Pialago said.
The convoy will pass through the yellow lanes on EDSA as the MMDA has not assigned any special lane for that purpose.
There will also be no street that will be closed for the simulation of the convoy.
Meanwhile, the MMDA said the rehearsal for the SEA Games will also be held on November 26, and this is seen to also cause heavy traffic.
Aside from the convoy of athletes and delegates, the MMDA will also be preparing for the arrival and departure of visitors who will watch the SEA Games.
“Mabigat po talaga ang magiging sitwasyon ng daloy sa NLEX. Kaya nga pati po yung mga truckers association pinakiusapan po natin na agahan ang business. Ang pakiusap natin sa kanila, 11 in the morning hanggang 6 in the evening wag na muna silang dumaan sa NLEX kasi inaasahan natin as early as 1 may mga atleta na magre-rehearse, may mga maaga nang pupunta sa Philippine Arena,” Pialago added.
The MMDA will also conduct simulation of traffic in going back from the venue to the hotels where the athletes, delegates and visitors who will watch the SEA Games will be billeted. (from the report of Joan Nano) /mbmf
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