TRANSPORT network company Grab said it has set up its own insurance coverage for its passengers from Great American Insurance Group because it is aware that some drivers operate their Grab-registered vehicles without provisional authority (PA) and are therefore considered colorum (local slang for unregistered).
According to Grab Philippines spokesperson and head of public affairs Leo Gonzales, the move is not meant to undermine the government’s decision not to accept applications for franchise of transport network vehicle service (TNVS) for the meantime, but only to take full accountability in case of any unforeseen accident.
On July 21, 2016, the Land Transportation Franchising Regulatory Board (LTFRB) issued Memorandum Circular 2016-008, suspending acceptance of TNVS applications.
“We should be accountable,” Gonzales said in a phone interview late Wednesday.
“As soon as the driver gets a PA from LTFRB, we can get an insurance PAMI. But while it is not yet the case as the LTFRB has stopped accepting applications for franchise of transport network vehicle service, we got our own insurance for the passengers,” Gonzales said.
PAMI stands for Passenger Accident Management and Insurance Agency Inc., which provides passenger insurance for public utility vehicles.
In a statement, Grab said it is committed to ensure passenger safety by conducting background screening and training for drivers, vehicle inspections, and in-app features like “support” where drivers and passengers can get in touch on any immediate concern.
It has also started setting up road-assistance in Metro Manila this month, with responders composed of drivers who have undergone training from certified rescuers and the Philippine Red Cross.
“We know for a fact that accidents do happen, even to the most careful and well-trained drivers. But the more that we should prepare for such scenarios and never leave our responsibilities behind,” Gonzales said.
Earlier, a certain Margarita del Rosario filed a cased against Uber Philippines at the Quezon City Regional Trial
Court due to injuries sustained after a truck hit the Uber vehicle she was riding in. According to del Rosario, the driver, the operator, and Uber did not help her shoulder her medical expenses.
Later, it was found out that the driver had no PA from the LTFRB and thus, no insurance coverage for passengers.
Asked for comment, Uber said they “have yet to receive a copy of the case.”
“It would be premature for us to comment at this time” Uber said in a text message on Thursday.