Don Mariano appeals revocation of franchise

by Zen Hernandez, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 30 2014 05:02 PM | Updated as of Jan 31 2014 01:02 AM

MANILA - The Don Mariano Transit Corporation has filed a motion for reconsideration against a Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) decision that revoked its franchise after the Skyway accident that killed 21 people.

Don Mariano said it was not given due process since copies of evidence were not initially provided. They were also not given the chance to respond, the firm said.

The firm also claims that the evidence used against them were inaccurate:

1) On the alleged illegal replacement of the chassis of the bus unit involved, Don Mariano said the PNP-HPG failed to get the right chassis number and instead provided the LTFRB with the vehicle's assembly control number;

2) On the alleged worn out tires, Don Mariano clarified only 2 of 6 tires were bald. An assessment conducted by the manufacturer, Bridgestone, indicates the tires were still serviceable. Don Mariano also pointed out that the bus unit involved in the December 16 accident was a three-year-old unit;

3) On the alleged failure of 36 of 42 Don Mariano units to pass road worthiness inspections, the firm said the deficiencies were mostly minor and cosmetic and were already addressed;

4) On the alleged series of accidents involving various Don Mariano units, the firm said the cases were still subject to an appeal.

The firm also refuses to be branded as "accident-prone" since the three accidents cited were merely part of its 20 years of operation.

The LTFRB will hear the appeal on February 5 and will come up with a final decision a few days after.

Don Mariano may still file an appeal before the Department of Transportation and Communications should the LTFRB decide to uphold its decision.