April 20, 2024

An official of La Trinidad, Benguet has proposed an ordinance that hopes to ensure the safety and protection of the growing number of non-motorized road users in the capital town.

The proposed ordinance authored by Councilor Teddy Walang also aims to raise public awareness, especially among motorists, of the presence of other road users who are vulnerable to accidents and other risks when using public roads.

“Considering the natural and physical characteristics of public roads in the municipality which limits the establishment of the needed infrastructure and facilities for the safety, convenience, and protection of the said road users, the enactment of regulatory measures under the present circumstances becomes necessary,” Walang said. 

He said vulnerable road users include bikers and pedestrians who are senior citizens, persons with disability, runners, and persons engaged in works along public roads, as well as persons riding or leading an animal along the road. 

The ordinance, now on second reading, requires all motorists and vulnerable road users to obey local and national traffic rules and regulations applicable to them including traffic signages, control devices or equipment, and those provided by traffic enforcers. 

It also reminds motorists to yield to pedestrians crossing the designated crosswalk or pedestrian lane for at least five seconds unless directed by a traffic enforcer.

Bikers shall follow the flow of vehicular traffic at all times or with reasonable margin from the edge of the road or sidewalk. They must also observe a speed limit of 30 kilometers per hour and wear a helmet and other protective and safety gears like reflectors especially at night.

If approved, the La Trinidad local government will produce appropriate signages and identify areas of the roads for vulnerable users. 

Due to the municipality’s narrow roads, the LGU would have to properly identify designated bike lanes.

“For now, what we have to do is to share the road with motorists. It’s really all about basic road courtesy between motorists, bikers, and pedestrians especially now that there are alternative modes of transportation aside from motor vehicles,” Walang said. – Ofelia C. Empian