Citom: Helmet Law causes confusion, better to defer itBy Marian Z. Codilla
Cebu Daily News
Implementing guidelines of the Motorcycle Helmet Act may cause confusion among law enforcement agencies and the public.
The Cebu City Traffic Operations Management (Citom) in a resolution approved last Monday asked to defer the Aug. 15 implementation of the new helmet law until these concerns are addressed.
Many motorycle owners are not even aware of the law because of a poor information campaign, said Citom chairman Sylvan Jakosalem.
Jakosalem said only 7,000 Philippine Standard (PS) and ICC stickers were released for accredited helmets compared to 321,560 motorcycles registered in Central Visayas.
He noted that DTI-7 recently warned the public of the proliferation of fake ICC stickers.
“There are still many motorcycle owners and passengers who are not knowledgeable with this law, all its important provisions, and its implementing guidelines, thereby causing a high level of confusion and concern among the motorcycle riding community,” said the Citom resolution.
“There is still confusion on what is an approved “standard” helmet, whether full-faced or not, and other allowed or disallowed specifications, plus other concerns which were not clarified in the guidelines.”
A motorcycle rider needs to have his helmet inspected and accredited by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) before being issued an ICC sticker.
The processing fee is P101.25.
But Jakosalem said the payment is not provided for in the law itself.
The Citom addressed its resoution to the Department of Transportation and Communication (DOTC) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).
Citom pointed out Section 4.2 of the joint DOTC-DTI administrative order which states that the DTI shall coordinate with law enforcement units, the local government units and the non-government organization (NGO) on their wisdom on the use of full-faced helmets.
“This provision shall add to the confusion as to which standards and guidelines to follow, or what helmets will be allowed in a particular locality,” said Citom.
The Cebu city government and Citom board, according to Jakosalem were never consulted about implementation of the law.
Earlier, Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama said city traffic personnel will not enforce the new helmet law and that the existing city ordinance requiring motorcycle riders to wear a crash helmet was enough.
Jakosalem said Cebu City Police Chief Ramon Melvin Buenafe who was present during the Citom board meeting raised his apprehension that full-faced helmets would allow hoodlums to hide their features when a crime is committed.
In the Capitol, the Provincial Board yesterday agreed to invite Land Transportation Office – 7 Regional Director Raul Aguiluz and DTI – 7 Regional Director Aster Caberte to shed light on the issues surrounding the new helmet law in next week’s regular session./with reports from Carmel Loise Matus