BAGUIO CITY – The Cordillera office of the Land Transportation Office (LTO-CAR) admitted that operators and drivers of public utility jeepneys (PUJs) or transport cooperatives have not yet availed of the required consolidation as one of the requisites of their compliance to the government’s public utility vehicle (PUV) modernization program.
LTO-CAR regional director Francis Ray Almora claimed that while there are some transport cooperatives that had been inquiring on how to proceed with the required consolidation, none of them pursued the mandated consolidation which is one of the major requirements for their compliance to the government’s PUV modernization program which will be implemented by the middle of next year.
He pointed out that one of the major reasons for the inability of operators and drives to consolidate is the absence of assurance from the government and the manufacturers on the presence of sufficient supply of modernized jeeps that could maneuver in the peculiar terrain of the Cordillera.
“There are no transport cooperatives that have availed of the consolidation although there are some that had been inquiring on how to proceed with the consolidation. We believe that our drivers and operators will eventually realize the benefits of availing of the modernization program so that people will be guaranteed of secure, convenient and safe travel,” Director Almora stressed.
The LTO-CAR official revealed that there are already manufacturers that are able to produce motor vehicles with engines capable of negotiating the difficult terrain in the different parts of the region considering that there are already 4 classes of modernized public transport vehicles.
According to him, the Class 1 vehicles are intended to replace tricycles among other similar type of vehicles, Class 2 are side facing vehicles, Class 3 are those from facing vehicles with air condition while Class 4 vehicles are side facing with baggage compartments which are the ones that had been identified to be suitable to the terrain of the region.
Almora explained that the Class 2 and 3 modernized vehicles are not suitable to the terrain of the region because they are reportedly long while the class 4 vehicles are manufactured to be much shorter and will be able to negotiate the sharp curves of the roads in the region, thus, there is a need for the concerned government agencies to again provide PUV operators and drivers the appropriate presentation on the said types of vehicles for the appreciation of the operators and drivers.
He urged operators and drivers in the region to be open-minded on the government’s PUV modernization program because the same is inclined to provide motorists with a safe, secure and convenient travel with the use of modernized motor vehicles that have been proven to be road worthy.
The government is expected to roll out the implementation of the PUV modernization program by the middle of next year wherein all PUV drivers and operators nationwide are required to consolidate for better bargaining powers with the government and the suppliers of the modernized vehicles that will flood the different parts of the country.