Truck breaks down at SRP, causes five-hour traffic CCTO to urge City Council to amend obstruction measure, raise fine
The Cebu City Traffic Office (CCTO) will recommend to the City Council to amend the traffic obstruction ordinance and increase fines for erring motorists after a truck, which broke down at the South Coastal Road yesterday caused heavy traffic for at least five hours at the South Road Properties (SRP).
Rafael Yap, CCTO head, said that the driver of the truck was only issued a citation ticket for an obstruction violation, which only carried a P500 fine.
Yap said that after their department meeting yesterday, they decided to recommend to the City Council to raise the fine of the City Ordinance 718 or the traffic obstruction ordinance from P500 for the violation to P3,000 for every hour that the stalled heavy vehicle would block the road.
Yap said that they also planned to recommend an increase separate fine of other lighter vehicles.
He, however, said that he could not recall how much they were increasing the fine for lighter vehicles.
“This will encourage vehicle owners to do regular maintenance on their vehicles,” said Yap.
“And for truck owners to be conscious of rescuing their ‘disabled’ vehicles,” he said.
Yesterday, a 10-wheeler truck broke down at the viaduct along the South Coastal Road at the SRP at 6:30 a.m.
The truck which was carrying fertilizers and was heading to Cebu City from the southern part of the city, when one of its tires gave way.
According to reports, one of the tie-rod ends connecting the tires and the steering wheel broke causing the tire to give way.
Without an equipment to immediately take away the stalled truck from the road, the CCTO had no choice but to wait until the truck’s owner arrived and worked on having the vehicle repaired, which took at least five hours.
“The owner had to bring a mechanic to repair the vehicle on the spot. We cannot tow it away. We even called city hall for assistance, but the city has also no available truck that can take it away. So we really had to wait for the owner and their mechanic to arrive,” said Ronie Nadera, a radio operator of the CCTO.
He said the mechanic arrived at the site at around 11am. By 11:46 am, they were able to pull out the truck already.
Yap said traffic flow started to normalize past noon yesterday.
The incident highlighted the city’s helplessness in case heavy trucks suddenly conk out and block roads.
“Truck operators are requested to always do maintenance on their trucks since a lot of the incidents involving the viaduct, like accidents and disabled vehicles, that cause heavy congestion involve trucks,” he said.
He said that vehicle owners should always observe traffic rules and regulations in order to avoid accidents and to also follow speed limits for security reasons.
Traffic citation issued
Yap said the truck driver could only be issued a traffic citation ticket (TCT) for obstruction of traffic, which carried the fine of P500, but aside from that, he had no other violation to settle.
Other streets affected
Yesterday’s traffic gridlock did not just affect the Cebu South Coastal Road (CSCR) in the SRP but other roads as well.
These included Vestil Street or the Mambaling Access Road and the N. Bacalso Avenue. These two roads are the alternative routes for motorists if they avoid passing through the South Coastal Road.
The truck was traveling northbound or heading toward Cebu City from the south when it stalled along the viaduct.
The CCTO did not close roads due to the obstruction but the stalled truck which occupied a lane of the two lane northbound side of the viaduct caused heavy traffic in the area.
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