Transport body suspends bus firm in Skyway accident
MANILA, Philippines–The Land Transportation and Franchising Board (LTFRB) on Monday issued a 30-day preventive suspension for all the 78 units of Don Mariano Transit.
The order was made after one of the bus firm’s units fell off the Skyway on the South Luzon Expressway in Parañaque City Monday morning killing at least 22 people.
“The board issued a preventive suspension to all the 78 units of Don Mariano Transit and we will require them to immediately stop their operation and submit their units for inspection,” said LTFRB Chairman Winston Ginez in an interview over Inquirer Radio 990AM.
Winston said the owner of the bus, Dr. Melissa Lim, has agreed to recall all the buses and will have to undergo road-worthiness inspections.
Based on records, Ginez said, the Don Mariano Transit was named as the most dangerous bus operator in Metro Manila based on damages to property since 2011.
“They already have pending cases regarding previous accidents the bus company had been involved in and we are looking into it,” he said.
Ginez said LTFRB together with the Land Transportation Office (LTO), Toll Regulatory Board (TRB), and Philippine National Police Highway Patrol Group will conduct a joint investigation on the accident.
“After the investigation is done, we will study if the franchise will be suspended or totally cancelled,” he said.
The victims, according to Ginez, are automatically covered by insurance.
“The dead people will receive P75 thousand and those injured will receive P15 thousand,” he said noting that the families of the fatalities will receive additional monetary reparation after cases will be filed against the bus operator.
The LTFRB chair assured the public that they are conducting their modernization program and buses that are more than 15 years will be phased out.
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