May 24, 2024

There are more vehicles failing the city government’s emissions standard compared to the number of vehicles that passed the Roadside Inspection, Testing, and Monitoring (RITM) operations.

In the 2023 accomplishment report of the RITM, 50.56 percent of 1,707 vehicles randomly flagged for emissions testing failed and only 49.44 percent passed.

A total of 118 RITM operations were conducted last year as part of the local government’s intervention to ensure adherence to the Philippine Clean Air Act of 1999 and improve air quality in the Summer Capital.

Of the 863 vehicles that failed the emissions testing, 649 have already complied with RITM recommendations to ensure their vehicles are roadworthy before plying city roads and streets.

Engineer Norman Nicoli Paradi of the Environmental Management Division-City Environment and Parks Management Office (EMD-Cepmo) said they have been conducting free voluntary emission testing for one month during the Saleng Festival in June to strengthen the campaign on clean air advocacy.

Last year, a total of seven operations were conducted wherein 158 vehicles were voluntarily tested and 104 passed while 49 failed. During the same period, five vehicles were tagged as not roadworthy.

For January 2024, a total of 109 out of 192 vehicles flagged down randomly for smoke emission tests were issued citation tickets for failing the city’s RITM standards.

Of the 109 vehicles that failed the emissions test, only 53 complied with the recommendations for them to clean and maintain their vehicles.

Roadside vehicle smoke belching inspections will continue in the city in an aim to reduce air pollutants that adversely impacts health and the environment.

This is based on Administrative Order 56, s. 2019 requiring the conduct of voluntary emission tests daily by the city’s RITM team with a P100 fee to be paid at the City Treasury Office.

Vehicles subject for testing will only be given two chances and if they still fail on the second test, then they will be required to secure another volunteer testing fee to cover the testing expense.

A certification of voluntary testing (CVT) is issued to the vehicle owner upon determination that the PUVs have passed emission levels and will be required to maintain their vehicles.

Holders of CVT will be exempted from roadside testing for two months for both the diesel and gas-fed engines.

However, those observed to still be emitting excessive smoke even within the two-month grace period will not be exempted from roadside tests.  Those that fail will have their CVT cancelled but no item will be confiscated.

Vehicles issued a warning will only be given seven days to repair, tune-up or preventive maintenance and non-compliance will mean automatic apprehension.

The Anti-smoke Belching Ordinance of the city provides a penalty of P1,000 on the first offense; P3,000 on the second offense; and P5,000 on the third offense. – Jessa Mardy P. Samidan