The Automobile Association Philippines (AAP) reminded the motoring public to follow traffic rules and regulations, particularly the road signs, symbols and lane markings. AAP vice president Johnny Angeles said that obeying traffic rules and regulations would spare motorists from apprehension and protect their rights on the road aside from promoting road safety.
“You have to know your rights as a motorist and the traffic regulations to protect yourself not just from erring police officers, but also to avoid accidents and other problems on the road,” Angeles said. He reminded motorists that disobeying traffic rules will cost “a great amount of money” plus “the hassle of getting your driver’s license back, which is worse. Those who get caught will pay a minimum fine of P2,000 and run the risk of not getting their driver’s license back for a year,” Angeles added.
Some of the traffic violations slapped on drivers include: driving without a license, driving with a suspended or revoked or improper license, driving under the influence of liquor and/or drugs and allowing an unlicensed/improperly licensed person to drive.
At the same time, Angeles also reminded motorists that their driver’s license cannot be confiscated when they are apprehended except in the following circumstances: the driver was involved in an accident, the driver has accumulated three or more unsettled violations, or if the driver allowed another person to use his driver’s license, drove against traffic flow, has no driver’s ID, and exceeded the speed limit.
Philippine Global Road Safety Partnership (PGRSP) Executive Director and former LTO chief Bert Suansing revealed that those who are not LTO enforcers nor deputized by the agency can only issue an ordinance violation receipt but cannot confiscate a driver’s license. “Only LTO enforcers and those deputized can take away your license and issue a temporary permit. Those who are not deputized by the LTO, cannot,” Suansing said. “However, they can hold a driver if he or she has violated for example, a local ordinance,” Suangsing added.
As for erring traffic law enforcers, Angeles said that motorists must know their rights and cite the rule of law. “Swerving is not a violation unless done in a reckless manner or in an area where there are signs present that explicitly prohibit it,” he pointed out. Being the chair of the AAP Advocacies Committee, Angeles has received reports that many traffic enforcers are preying on unknowing victims. “What better way to combat these blundering officials but to do what is right and know your law,” he asserted. “If you think your rights are violated or you have been a victim of erring traffic enforcers, you should file a complaint before the Metro Manila Development Authority within five days after apprehension.”