In line with its commitment to make the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) not only world-class but the safest expressway in the country as well, the Manila North Tollways Corp. (MNTC) recognized 10 trucking and bus companies for sharing the same passion for road safety through its 2014 NLEXcellence Safety Awards held recently at Crowne Plaza Manila Galleria in Ortigas Center.
“The NLEXcellence Safety Awards is our way of recognizing NLEX users who share the same values, dedication and commitment to safety,” Rodrigo E. Franco, MNTC president and CEO, said. “They are the companies who keep their vehicles properly maintained at all times, whose drivers follow all the rules and regulations, and adhere to the highest standards of safety while driving.”
“These are the people who help us make the expressway safe for all users,” he added.
“It is our objective to make the NLEXcellence Safety Awards the seal of excellence in road safety that will make the awardees role models for other companies to emulate when it comes to the best practices in company operations in general, and road safety in particular,” Renie U. Ticzon, MNTC vice president for marketing, said.
This year’s NLEXcellence Safety Awardees were led by Liquigaz Philippines Corporation which received the Hall of Fame award. The company, a retailer of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), was an awardee last year for the Driver Professionalism category.
“Delivering hazardous substances requires a great deal of safety. Transporting it from our main terminal in Bataan to different locations in the National Capital Region and even to sites as far as Batangas 24/7, our drivers are trained to be disciplined and extra careful whenever they are on the road. We even have a safety committee that conducts in-house training on driving and evaluation of our drivers’ performance,” Christopher Mina, logistics and distribution senior supervisor of Liquigaz, pointed out.
Thanking MNTC, he said programs like the NLEXcellence Safety Awards help inspire their drivers become better and be “safety conscious by heart.”
Megacem Inc., a cement retailer which was named awardee in two categories—Company Operational Excellence and Driver Professionalism—also affirmed its support for the NLEXcellence Safety Awards program.
“We throw our support to NLEX for taking this initiative in promoting road safety consciousness. It’s high time that someone must step up and encourage partnership, discipline, safety consciousness and excellence among their drivers and fleet operations while on the road like the people behind NLEX. We are very glad that NLEX has recognized our safety programs in Megacem,” Rodolfo Manuel, Megacem president said.
Aside from Liquigaz and Megacem, the other top honorees for 2014 were EUG Freight Services Inc., Giga Trucking Services, and Inland Corporation, which also received two awards each.
For the Company Operational Excellence category, the awardees were: C.M. Pancho Construction Inc., EUG Freight Services Inc., Giga Trucking Services, and Megacem Inc.
Under the Vehicle Quality category, the awardees were: Stellar Cargo Movers, Frey-Fil Corporation, Giga Trucking Services, and Inland Corporation. For the Driver Professionalism category, the awardees were: EUG Freight Services Inc., Megacem Inc., Luzon Cisco Transport Inc., RNE Trucking Services, and Inland Corporation.
Nominees to the Vehicle Quality category were assessed based on the vehicles’ roadworthiness, specifically the condition of the vehicles’ engine, tires, brakes, lights, etc., the availability of safety devices and emergency tools, presence of required documents, as well as the vehicles’ cleanliness and the comfort of the driver and his assistant.
In the Driver Professionalism category, nominees were evaluated based on their driving skills, performance record, knowledge of traffic rules, regulations and signs, physical fitness, health and presentable appearance, apprehension record, and regulatory compliance.
Under the Company Operational Excellence category, the companies were assessed on their road safety record, implementation of company policies and programs that promote safety (such as regular physical examination of drivers that include drug and alcohol tests), regular skills training and behavioral workshops, close management and supervision, etc. The company should also have an extensive vehicle care program such as regular preventive maintenance, mandatory replacement of tires and other wearing parts.
The NLEXcellence Safety Awards program is open to bus and trucking company that meets the following qualifications: it must own a fleet of, at least, 20 vehicles; at least 50 percent of its trips traverse North Philippines, and 30 percent of these trips are taken on NLEX.