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Palace: Bus tragedies a reminder to common carriers to practice extraordinary diligence

Posted On 2013 Dec 18
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A policeman searches for personal belongings of passengers after a bus fell off an elevated expressway and crashed into a van below in Taguig city, south of Manila December 16, 2013. At least 21 people were killed during the incident, according to the police.  (MNS photo)

A policeman searches for personal belongings of passengers after a bus fell off an elevated expressway and crashed into a van below in Taguig city, south of Manila December 16, 2013. At least 21 people were killed during the incident, according to the police. (MNS photo)

MANILA  (Mabuhay) – The deadly bus accidents that killed at least 20 people in the last two days should remind public transport operators of their duty to practice extraordinary diligence, Malacañang said Monday.

Presidential Spokesman Edwin Lacierda also assured the riding public the government is enforcing speed limits and other measures aimed at ensuring their safety.

“I think tragedies like this fully serve to remind the common carriers that they have an obligation in transportation law, extraordinary diligence,” he said, adding sanctions are imposed upon them if an accident occurs.

He said Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya ordered the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board to order the immediate automatic suspension of all 78 units of Don Mariano Transport Corp., whose bus figured in an accident at Skyway early Monday.

During the 30-day suspension, LTFRB Chairman Winston Ginez was instructed by Abaya to investigate the drivers and have them undergo drug tests, while reviewing the performance record of Don Mariano Transport Corporation.

Also, Abaya ordered Toll Regulatory Board executive director Edmund Reyes to review video footage of the Skyway accident and draw up measures to avoid a repeat of the bus fall from an elevated tollway.

Lacierda also said the owner of Don Mariano Transit had indicated she will comply with the directive.

But he also said the government is bound by law to follow due process before imposing harsher sanctions on the bus operators involved in deadly accidents.

“We are bound by law. There are processes involved which we have to follow,” he said.

On the other hand, Lacierda said the Palace will emphasize to Abaya and Ginez to review the speed limits at major thoroughfares to avoid a repeat of the accident. (MNS)

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