LTFRB warns sanctions vs ride-hailing firms overcharging during holiday season

Robie de Guzman   •   December 19, 2019   •   240

MANILA, Philippines – The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) has warned to revoke the permits of Transport Network Companies (TNC) who will be found guilty of exacting exorbitant fares from the riding public this holiday season.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, the LTFRB said it issued the warning following increasing complaints of lack of Transport Network Vehicle Service (TNVS) units and continuous overcharging as noted by commuters this month.

“To the TNCs, do not abuse the clamor for TNVS this holiday season, hindi kami magdadalawang isip na tanggalan kayo ng permit kung kayo ay lalabag sa mga mandato na nakasaad sa inyong kontrata.” LTFRB chairman Martin Delgra said.

Delgra said the Board has called for a meeting with the app-based ride-hailing services this week to discuss the issue.

“To date, the agency has already issued around 49,000 Provisional Authorities and 11,000 Certificate of Public Convenience (CPCs) totaling to an approximate 60,000 permits given to TNVS in order for them to operate and to accommodate the need for additional public land transport. Ang tanong dito ay bakit kakaunti ang tumatakbong units?” Delgra said.

“The TNCs have to clarify this to us and to the riding public,” he added.

The Board also reminded the ride-hailing firms to strictly follow the approve fare structure guidelines, adding that they are continuously reviewing and monitoring the fare setting computation to determine any violation.

In the fare matrix approved by the LTFRB in August, TNVS companies are allowed to charge a flag down rate of up to P40 for car sedans, up to P50 for premium sport utility vehicles (SUV), and up to P30 for hatchbacks or sub-compact vehicles.

The Board also allowed a P15 additional charge per kilometer for sedans, P18 for SUVs, and P13 for hatchbacks, aside from the P2 charge per minute of travel. It also allowed TNVS firms to double their per kilometer and per minute charge through surge pricing.

The TNCs accredited by the LTFRB are Grab, Hype, Hirna, Owto, MiCab, Go Lag, ePickMeUp, SnappyCab, and Ryd.

Earlier this week, Grab was penalized by the Philippine Competition Commission for allegedly breaching its commitments on pricing and driver cancellation rates.

Lawmakers have also called on the LTFRB to review Grab face matrix amid reports of sudden surge pricing.

PUV operators ask LTFRB to remove P5,000 penalty vs drivers for not wearing facemasks while on duty

Maris Federez   •   February 19, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — Metro Manila jeepney operators asked the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) to remove the P5,000.00 fine being imposed on public utility vehicles (PUV) drivers for not wearing facemasks while on transport.

Under the LTFRB memorandum circular 2020-05, drivers and operators are required to wear facemasks as part of their safety precaution against coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Alliance of Concerned Transport Operators (ACTO) President Efren de Luna said they are always ready to take heed on the said measure, except that they are having difficulty finding available face masks in the market.

“Ang problema ho dun walang mabilhan, pag walang raw hong mask, may bayad ng 5000, may fine na penalty na P5,000,” de Luna said.

He pointed out that even the Department of Health has advised that due to the shortage in the supply of facemasks, priority is given to health workers and patients on its usage.

The LTFRB, on the other hand, said during the hearing at the House Committee on Transportation that it will review the said measure and will take the request into consideration. — (from the report of Vincent Arboleda) /mbmf

Authorities nab over 170 vehicles in anti-colorum operations in Metro Manila

Aileen Cerrudo   •   February 5, 2020

Over 170 vehicles were apprehended during the one-time big-time anti-colorum operations of the Highway Patrol Group (HPG), Land Transportation and Franchising Board (LTFRB) and the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).

The operation was conducted in 15 areas in Metro Manila on Tuesday evening (February 4).

According HPG Director PBGen. Eliseo Cruz, it was carried out under the directive of President Rodrigo Duterte and Philippine National Police Chief PGen. Archie Gamboa.

“[There was] cooperation [with the] LTO [and] HPG to train our personnel [so] eventually our HPG personnel will deputize with the LTO, to implement to enforce traffic law and regulation,” he said.

Apprehended vehicles include those with no plate number and those using unauthorized blinkers. Authorities also apprehended overloaded trucks.

Among the over 300 trucks inspected, 78 of them were overloaded. Meanwhile, 68 vehicles received temporary operations permit due to various violations including not wearing a helmet or seatbelt.—AAC (with reports from Bernard Dadis)

Authorities caught motorcycle riders in Cagayan de Oro operating under Angkas

Aileen Cerrudo   •   January 7, 2020

Authorities have caught several motorcycle riders operating as taxi service under the ride-hailing app Angkas in Cagayan De Oro City which is outside of the designated Motorcycle Taxi Service Pilot Implementation Study area.

After receiving several complaints, the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) Region 10 office conducted the operation against several units of Angkas. The motorcycles were immediately impounded.

In a Facebook post of the Department of Transportation (DOTr), the riders were “reported to have been violating the terms of the MC Taxi Pilot Study guidelines adopted by the Technical Working Group (TWG).”

“Under current transport laws, Motorcycles are strictly prohibited from being utilized as public transportation. The exception now is the ongoing MC Pilot Study program being implemented by the TWG in Metro Manila and Metro Cebu only,” the post reads

Under the law, riders who are operating colorum motorcycles will be fined P6,000.

The pilot test run is still on-going and is expected to be done by March 23, 2020.

Meanwhile, the Quezon City Regional Trial Court was not in favor with the request of the Lawyers for Commuters Safety to suspend operations of other motorcycle taxis.

Based on the court’s decision, the group presented insufficient evidence for the court to provide a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) against other motorcycle taxis for hire.—AAC (with reports from Joan Nano)

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