Top Things That Drivers Should Know
Most drivers would agree that at some point in their lives they will inevitably experience a confrontation with a traffic enforcer. Some reports have also stated that a few traffic enforcers have veered from their usual duties and become violators as well.
To help reduce the amount of unwarranted fines hurled at drivers, here are some of the rules that were shared to us by the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) that we must keep in mind when driving on the road. Knowing your rights and responsibilities as a driver will always keep you safe, and hopefully, out of trouble too.
- MMDA enforcers are not allowed to gang up (2 or more) while apprehending except during special operations (and legal operations, of course).
- Drivers are also encouraged to ask for the traffic enforcer’s written mission order. The mission order notes the area of responsibility, time of duty, official functions of the enforcer and if he or she is authorized to issue tickets.
- No traffic enforcer should issue a Traffic Violation Receipt (TVR) if not in complete uniform, with visible nameplates and without any delay or argument on the road.
- Drivers should not be asked to step out of their vehicles while being apprehended. Traffic enforcers are not allowed to ask or receive bribes from erring drivers and in turn, drivers should not try to bribe them.
- No traffic enforcer shall confiscate one’s driver’s license during traffic apprehensions unless they are involved in an accident or have 3 or more unsettled traffic violations.
- A driver can only be arrested if they are: allowing another person to use their driver’s license; using a fake license; no driver’s license; illegal or unauthorized counter-flow; unauthorized transfer of plates, tags, stickers and over speeding.
- Public utility vehicle drivers may be apprehended for having fake, broken, altered, or reconnected sealing wire, taximeter, colorum operation (cargo/passenger vehicle), defective non-operational or tampered taxi meter, trip-cutting, refusal to service public passengers or using a motor vehicle in commission of a crime. If the driver’s license has been confiscated, it is the duty of the enforcer to inform the arrested driver on the validity of the ticket. For the driver’s part, refusal to surrender the driver’s license could lead to the detachment of the license plate “pursuant to Section 74 & 75, MC 89-105.”
- Should a driver want to contest a violation against him, one may submit a letter of complaint addressed to the Traffic Adjudication Board (TAB), MMDA Bldg. EDSA corner Orense Street, Guadalupe Nuevo, Makati City, within 5 days after the apprehension. Moreover, drivers are also urged to call the MMDA Hotline 136, or the Metrobase at 0917-527-7304 if they have had an argument with a Traffic Enforcer.
TIME AND LINE
- Drivers should be mindful that swerving, per se, is not a traffic violation. MMDA defined swerving as a movement wherein vehicles shift from one lane to another. However, swerving could turn into a violation if “done without precautions” such as “swerving in an abrupt and careless manner, done without the use of signals and/or across solid lines,” among others.
- Remember: Yellow lanes must be clear of private vehicles, unless drivers are about to make a turn. Moreover, city buses (provincial buses are also not allowed in the yellow lanes) are not allowed to go beyond the yellow lanes.
- Finally, keep in mind the various number coding schemes in different cities within Metro Manila. There are no number coding schemes within Taguig, Marikina and Paranaque. Makati, Malabon and Las Pinas are enforcing a number coding scheme between 7am-7pm. Pasig City implements window hours from 9am-4pm.