MANILA — The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) is eyeing to designate special lanes along EDSA and other major thoroughfares for fire trucks and other emergency vehicles by the first quarter of 2017.
MMDA General Manager Thomas Orbos said fire trucks and ambulances must be able to pass through the streets unimpeded so they could swiftly respond to emergencies.
“We assure that the MMDA will be able to provide our riders, through the assistance of our Metrobase, to help them pass through these special lanes. We will inform traffic enforcers that a certain emergency incident is happening,” Orbos said in an interview with reporters.
Furthermore, the MMDA will grant these emergency vehicles accreditation.
The MMDA chief reiterated that special lanes are not VIP lanes and are intended to ensure that traffic will not be a hindrance to vehicles providing medical, rescue and other emergency services.
“We would like to reiterate that these special lanes must not be abused and must be utilized for truly emergency purposes,” he said.
The agency will also deploy its towing trucks to clear obstructions, such as illegally parked vehicles, on streets leading to residential communities where there is an emergency.
For its part, the Bureau of Fire Protection-National Capital Region (BFP-NCR) will convert its conference room into a war room that will be equipped with monitors to mirror those at the Metrobase for efficient monitoring and response to fires in Metro Manila.
BFP personnel will take over the operations of the Metrobase to monitor fire and tire burning incidents in Metro Manila from Dec. 31, 2016 to Jan. 1, 2017.