Poe to LTFRB: ‘Act humanely’, review plan to bar hatchbacks, compact cars as TNVS
The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) should “act humanely” and reconsider its plan to disallow hatchbacks and compact cars to operate as transport network vehicle services (TNVS), Senator Grace Poe appealed on Wednesday.
“Safety is a paramount concern in any mode of public transportation. However, given that many hatchback or compact cars have been allowed to operate as TNVS for the past two years without incident, then the LTFRB should consider the livelihood of those affected by their order,” Poe, chair of the Senate committee on public services, said in a statement.
LTFRB board member Aileen Lizada has said that the agency is planning to ban and remove the accreditation of small, compact cars or non-2,000-cc rated vehicles for Uber and Grab, citing the safety of the passengers.
However, Poe said that the owners of compact cars who have already registered with TNCs under the old guidelines “should not be suddenly deprived of their livelihood.”
“The agency should comply with due process and at (the) very least act humanely by providing a considerable amount of time as a transition period for the owners of these vehicles,” she said.
Poe noted that if such vehicle is safe for “personal use and to carry family members, how is it not safe to ferry passengers?”
Once implemented, the LTFRB’s plan would not just take away the livelihood of TNVS operators and drivers, but also result in fewer TNVS servicing the TNVS-riding population, Poe pointed out.
“Given this, will the LTFRB now lift the moratorium on TNVS applications?” she asked.
The senator said that the LTFRB should not just impose stringent measures on hatchbacks alone but also to all kinds of public utility vehicles to ensure the safety of the riding public.
“Lastly, it goes without saying that all public transportation vehicles should be safe, environmentally friendly, and comfortable. If the LTFRB imposes such stringent measures on hatchbacks, then they should impose the same safety standards to all kinds of PUVs and not just the TNVS,” she said.
“Are two-year old hatchbacks any less safe than a 10-year old taxi or one that is not well-maintained?” she added. /kga
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