BAGUIO CITY – Officials of the Cordillera office of the Department of Transportation and Communication (DOTC-CAR) admitted complaints from police operatives and the public against erring drivers reportedly increased last month because of the perception that such grievances are being immediately addressed by responsible employees.
DOTC-CAR sources revealed during the first semester of this year, the agency had been receiving an average of 120 complaints from the public against erring drivers in the Baguio and Benguet area but such figures more than tripled to over 400 cases received by the office during the month of July.
The source revealed most of the complaints filed in their office came from apprehending officers and the public who usually grieve about the reckless driving of erring drivers of public utility vehicles.
“We believe that our motorists are now aware of their rights to be protected from erring drivers and that the DOTC promptly acts on such complaints being filed in their office in due time. The scenario is good for the motoring and commuting public because they are now aware of their rights and it c could be bad because it is evident that there are more erring drivers in the city,” the source stressed.
The source claimed complainants must be patient in awaiting the schedule of hearings of their complaints because the increasing volume of cases would need more time for the agency to resolve, thus, some of the complaints are being held in later dates.
The DOTC-CAR official assured all complaints against erring drivers will be given due course but patience and understanding must prevail considering the sudden increase of such complaints, adding up to other pending concerns that need to be acted upon by the agency.
According to the source, the perception of the public on the performance of the agency significantly improved over the past several months because pending cases against erring drivers were immediately acted upon in order to instill discipline among the transport sector which is one of the show windows of the city’s tourism industry.
The source appealed to the motoring and commuting public to continue being vigilant against erring drivers by filing the necessary complaint against them so that they will be meted the appropriate penalties in order to teach them the lesson to respect the public and not to abuse them among other related complaints.
With the expected increase in the number of tourist arrivals in the coming months, the source asserted erring drivers who were earlier penalized for their violations should learn their lessons from there and start improving the delivery of their services to their passengers so that tourists will be able to bring back their trust and confidence to the local transport sector.
The source added the increase in fines of erring drivers should give them the chance to reflect on their mistakes and improve on them in the coming days as they pursue their chosen trade to earn income that will sustain the living condition of their families.
The DOTC0CAR has only a few hearing officers to dispose of the complaints of motorists against erring drivers, thus, the need for utmost understanding on the existing situation that most of the time results to the delay in the scheduling of hearing for the filed cases.
By Dexter A. See