CEBU CITY COUNTERFLOWING MEASURE
Three days into the implementation of Mayor Tomas Osmeña’s Executive Order (EO) No. 34, otherwise known as Cebu City’s anti-counterflowing measure, traffic authorities are now looking at obtaining a bigger impounding area for vehicles caught violating the EO.
Cebu City Transportation Office (CCTO) operations chief Francisco Ouano said that a bigger impounding area for vehicles would be needed as the city’s campaign against counterflowing continues to move 24 hours a day.
The EO penalizes those driving into traffic that flows in the opposite direction with a fine of P500 while the vehicles will be impounded for 30 days.
Drivers caught overtaking with no regard for solid lines on the road will also suffer the same penalty as well as those found committing other acts of reckless driving under the Traffic Code of the Philippines.
To date, 120 motorcycles, seven private vehicles, two public utility jeepneys (PUJs), and one taxi had been impounded as the campaign entered its third day, yesterday.
The vehicles are now being kept in a 1.5 hectare open area along the city’s South Road Properties (SRP).
At the rate of daily apprehensions done, Ouano said, the city will soon need a second impounding area for the vehicles.
“Although our current area is not yet full, we really need a bigger impounding area,” said Ouano as he expects more vehicles to be impounded in the coming days even while those already kept in storage will have to stay for 30 days under the EO.
CCTO is considering a covered property at the SRP owned by Bigfoot Entertainment which spans 1.5 to two hectares.
“Mayor Osmeña wants a warehouse with a roof which is what we are looking at right now,” Ouano said in Cebuano.
Opposition councilors Joel Garganera, Raymond Garcia, and Pastor Alcover Jr. expressed disagreement over the 30-day impoundment rule contained in the mayor’s EO although they said, they were not against the counterflow measure per se.
According to the councilors, impoundment is not among the sanctions provided for under the Traffic Code of the Philippines to penalize counterflowing vehicles.
“If he (Osmeña) thinks that counterflowing is illegal, then you cannot have a solution that is also illegal,” said Alcover.
The anti-counterflowing measure, signed by the mayor last Friday, aims to ease traffic congestion and minimize road accidents caused by reckless driving.
“We can see that the drivers are now more disciplined although there are still motorcyles that violate the rules,” Ouano said of the campaign’s third day, Wednesday.