Thursday, September 20, 2018
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App alerts LTFRB about commuter gripes

ROAD SAFETY PARTNERSHIP. Ginez (left) and Lozada at the launch of the “Safe Ride” app. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

ROAD SAFETY PARTNERSHIP. Ginez (left) and Lozada at the launch of the “Safe Ride” app. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

A mobile application aims to provide public transport commuters with a quicker access to the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) should they need to report an emergency or make a complaint backed by photos or videos.

Through the “Safe Ride” app, passengers snubbed by picky taxi drivers, for example, can take pictures of the cab’s driver and plate number and have the images sent to a database server and on to LTFRB contact centers for appropriate action.

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“Our original design was only for taking photos. But according to the LTFRB, if they (commuters) can take a short video clip especially of taxi drivers who refuse to accept passengers, it will accept the clip as electronic evidence,” said Rodolfo “Jun” Lozada, president of Galileo Software Services Inc., the app developer.

Lozada rose to national prominence during the Arroyo administration as the whistle-blower on the anomalous NBN-ZTE telecommunications deal.

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The Safe Ride app also has a “Red Button” feature, similar to the assistive touch feature of Apple phones, that allows a commuter to send an emergency text message to a preset number. By pressing it for three seconds, the button will turn green and an SOS message containing the time stamp and the sender’s location will be sent out.

“Even if your phone is locked, once this is pressed it will tell the LTFRB that someone is in trouble,” Lozada said during the launch of the app at the LTFRB main office in Quezon City on Tuesday.

Other features allow access to emergency hotline numbers (police, fire stations, hospitals, etc.) and a quick reporting of road obstructions to the LTFRB.

LFTRB Chair Winston Ginez said the app should be ready for downloading by late November.

Ginez explained that under the partnership between the board and Galileo, “there will be no expenses on the part of the government. Our role is to receive the emergency call or SOS so that we can act on it.”

Galileo was also the company behind the recently developed “Police Accident Report Kit” or Parak, an app allowing traffic officers to complete the documentation of a road accident as quickly as possible so as not to prolong the bottleneck caused by the incident.

The software company also came up with the “Theft Apprehension and Recovery Application” or Tara, which disables a smartphone’s essential features if the owner misplaces the device or loses it to theft.

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TAGS: Jun Lozada, Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board, LTFRB, Safe Ride app, Transportation, Winston Ginez
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