June 20, 2024

A forum about the implementation of the mandatory use of high visibility vest for motorists traversing any road within Benguet has been set on June 13 at the Capitol compound.

The much-talked about Ordinance 2022-302, which requires all drivers and riders of motorcycle, tricycle, e-bike and bicycle to wear a high visibility vest while traveling along the national highway and in all provincial, municipal and barangay roads has been widely criticized by citizens last week.

Social media platforms went abuzz last week after a post from the official Facebook account of the province announced the implementation of the ordinance, which was recently unanimously approved by the provincial board and signed by the governor. 

In the ordinance, drivers, riders, and back riders of motorcycle, tricycle, e-bike and bicycle are mandated to wear a high visibility vest while traveling along the roads of the province regardless whether it is a long or short trip for 24 hours.  

Also, if they are carrying a backpack, it should have a reflector or a high visibility material.

The provincial administrator in cooperation with the municipal and barangay local government units will implement the ordinance.  

Those found violating the ordinance will be fined P500 for the first offense, P1,000 for the second offense, and P1,500 for the third offense and succeeding offenses or community service in their barangays for three days.

The ordinance aims to safeguard all road users particularly the drivers and riders of motorcycle, tricycle, e-bike and bicycles from “ruinous and extremely injurious effects of fatal or life-threatening accidents and crashes”.

“Towards this end, it shall pursue a more proactive and preventive approach to secure the safety of motorists, their passengers including pedestrians at all times through the mandatory enforcement on the use of high visibility vest,” the ordinance reads.

Vice Gov. Johnny Waguis said the ordinance underwent consultation under the committee on transportation prior to its approval.

Waguis said all residents are welcome to join the information education campaign on the ordinance. The IEC starts for 9:30 a.m. at the Sangguniang Panlalawigan function hall, third floor of the Legislative Building at the Capitol compound. – Ofelia Empian