On the first day that the Anti-Distracted Driving Act went into force Thursday, at least 130 motorists were apprehended using their cellular phones or some other gadget while driving.
By noon Friday, only about 20 have been caught committing the violation, even as authorities stressed that the measure is really in the interest of road safety, AND not just for motorists.
According to Gundo Weiler, country representative of the World Health Organization (WHO), “road safety is a major issue not just in the Philippines. Globally, we estimate as many as one million people die as a result of road accidents every year.”
One problem many see involves onerous provisions that, many motorists perceive, do not exactly make the law practical to enforce.
That’s why the transportation agencies mandated to spearhead the implementation of the Anti-Distracted Driving Law, such as the Department of Transportation, the Lad Transportation Office, and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority and the Philippine National Police (PNP) Highway Patrol Group, are scrambling to introduce tweaks to make the law more readily enforceable and less of a hassle to implement.
There is likewise an initiative to seek the help of Congress to make the measure a legislated matter.
The thing is, this is not just for the motorists, because even pedestrians are now within the radar of the transport authorities, due to the many instances of pedestrians getting involved because they are distracted using their mobile devices, like phones, while walking on the streets.
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