San Juan cops on bikes get body cams to catch violators of health rules
MANILA, Philippines — Police officers in San Juan City who will be enforcing the city’s health rules while on bicycle patrols, are now equipped with body cameras to catch violators, Mayor Francis Zamora said Thursday.
In a press briefing with reporters at Ortigas Avenue, Zamora said the bike patrols will go around dedicated bike lanes and smaller streets to apprehend those who will not be wearing face masks and face shields as well as those who will be spitting in public places.
“Importante ang body camera sapagka’t hindi lamang ang nagviviolate ng bike lanes, ang hinuhuli pati yung nagviviolate ng ordinansa patungkol sa hindi pagsuot ng face mask at face shield pati yung anti-spitting ordinance,” he said.
(Body cameras are important because they will not only apprehend those who will violate the bike lanes, they will also apprehend violators of ordinances on wearing of face masks, face shields as well as the anti-spitting ordinance.)
Zamora said 30 police bike patrollers were issued body cameras to record videos or take photos of ordinance violators.
“Bakit kailangan ng body cam? Kasi kadalasan sasabihin nila (violators), ‘hindi tinanggal ko lang mask ko uminom anko ng tubig.’ Kanya-kanyang palusot ang iba. Nagkakaroon pa tuloy ng room for interpretation,” the mayor said.
(Why do we need body cameras? Because mostly the violators will make excuses which makes room for interpretation.)
“Kapag may body cam na tayo, may video, may photos, maliwanag na may violations. Ipapakita sa inyo ‘yan. Kung gusto niyo i-contest ang violation ninyo, yung traffic enforcers at Task Force Disiplina ay mayroong body cam footage, may video at photo,” he added.
(If we have body cameras, we have videos, photos, and it is clear that there are violations. We will show these videos to you. If you want to contest the violations, traffic enforcers and Task Force Disiplina will show you the videos and photos of your violation.)
At the same time, Zamora said the bike patrollers will also ensure the safety of cyclists who will be using the modified bicycle lanes along Ortigas Avenue in San Juan.
“Ni-la-launch din natin ngayon ang San Juan police bike patrollers dahil mayroon na tayong bike lanes, nagtalaga din tayong ng mga pulis na nakabisikleta na ang trabaho nila na umikot ikot sa bike lanes to ensure the safety of everyone who is biking and to ensure that everyone who is biking is wearing a mask,” he said.
(We launched San Juan bike patrollers today because we have bike lanes, we also have police officers on board bikes and their job is to check the bike lanes and ensure the safety of everyone who is biking and to make sure that everyone who is biking is wearing a mask.)
Aside from bike patrollers, Zamora said they will also distribute body cameras to traffic enforcers and members of the city government’s Task Force Disiplina, which also implement the health rules.
For now, Zamora said police officers with body cams will just observe and warn violators as they start their patrols on the modified bike lanes and motorcycle lanes along Ortigas Avenue.
“Sa ngayon, since day one ng modified bike lanes and modified motorcycle lanes, we will observe first the flow. We will give people the chance to understand and learn na dito sa San Juan na may dedicated bike lane,” the mayor said when questioned about law enforcers’ arrest of violators along bike lanes.
(For now, since we only launched the modified bike lanes and modified motorcycle lanes, we will observe first the flow. We will give people the chance to understand and learn the dedicated bike lanes in San Juan.)
As of Wednesday, San Juan recorded 2,530 confirmed coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases with 2,117 recoveries and 71 deaths.
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