MARCOS HIGHWAY INTRICACIES

For the nth time, motorists had been encountering monstrous traffic congestions along portions of Marcos highway because of the occurrence of vehicular accidents and the stalling of big trucks that resulted to the serious delays in the supposed to be smooth travel inside and outside the city. Marcos highway is one of the major roadlines leading to and from the country’s Summer Capital and underwent massive rehabilitation for its conversion into an all-weather road nearly two decades ago to serve as an alternate road to the scenic and historic Kennon Road. Within the roadline is a 3.2-kilometer uphill portion where motor vehicles often encounter problems that sometimes result to the occurrence of untoward incidents that pose serious threat to life and limb or cause the untimely demise of innocent individuals.

In several instances, the ascending portion of the road had to be closed to vehicular traffic for several hours because of the occurrence of vehicular accidents that resulted to the existence of stalled trucks which cause monstrous traffic congestions that have lasted for several hours that often disappoint residents and visitors alike. In most cases, the stalled vehicles often spill oil and fuel on the road that contribute to the existence of slippery portions making it difficult for motor vehicles to ascend even if the stalled vehicles are removed from the portion of the road to pave the way for the smooth flow of traffic. While there is an alternate road leading to the town proper of Tuba and exiting in the upper portion of the ascending portion, motorists have a difficulty in maneuvering through the said road primarily because it is too narrow aside from the fact that there is a huge volume of vehicles passing through it making it difficult for everyone to pass through the same which result to the occurrence of another line of motor vehicle traffic.

Previously, there was a proposal to re-grade the stiff ascending portion of the roadline to make it easier for motorists to traverse the area but public works officials seem to have done nothing about the proposal to date despite the occurrence of numerous accidents that have resulted to the loss of hundreds of innocent lives and the infliction of injuries to hundreds of others who were directly or indirectly affected by the occurrence of the said accidents.

The latest incidents that resulted to the occurrence of traffic congestions that lasted for several hours which delayed the delivery of goods and the transport of visitors to the city have again awakened several sectors to propose for the putting in place of appropriate interventions that will lead to the prevention of vehicular accidents that compromise the safety of life and lib. The proposals range from the regarding of the ascending portion of the road, putting in place of the necessary weigh bridge in a portion of the road prior to the critical ascending portion, the placing of rubber strips in the ascending portion of the road among others which deserve the conduct of study and recommendation by no less than the Department of Public works and Highways (DPWH) which is in charge of the maintenance of national roads where Marcos highway is classified.

We believe that it is now high time for the concerned government agencies and the local government to take drastic measures that will put in place whatever suitable interventions to prevent the occurrence of accidents along the critical portion of the road that will pose a serious threat to life and limb. The occurrence of untoward accidents that will cause serious delays in the travel inside and outside the city will definitely have a serious repercussion to the sustained growth of the local tourism industry because those who were able to experience the delays in travelling inside and outside the city will surely be talking about their bad experience that could disappoint their friends or relatives from considering spending their vacation in the city and the Cordillera.

It is high time for the regional and district offices of the DPWH to formulate the necessary plans for the putting in place of whatever applicable interventions that could contribute in efforts to prevent the occurrence of accidents that pose a serious threat to life and limb. If the policies that will be implemented will go as far as prohibiting overloaded trucks from passing through the critical portion, then it must be strictly implemented aside from making sure that those vehicles that are capable of passing through the stiff ascending portions will be the ones that will be allowed while those with excessive cargo will have to load their goods to smaller vehicles who will ferry the load to their point of destination in the city and other parts of the region passing through Baguio City and La Trinidad.

Let us continue bestowing our trust and confidence to the experts in the formulation of the doable solutions to the said problem because we know that they have all the solutions in mind and what is important is that they will be able to implement the interventions the soonest possible time for the benefit of safety of the general public.

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