LTFRB lists most dangerous bus firms

by Zen Hernandez, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 23 2011 04:49 PM | Updated as of Sep 24 2011 06:24 AM

MANILA, Philippines – Due to the alarming number of accidents involving buses during the past few weeks and months, the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) released a list of bus companies with the most number of road accidents that resulted to death, injury and damage to property.

Topping the list is Nova Auto Transport, the same bus company that got involved in the accident that killed University of the Philippines professor Chit Estella-Simbulan, with 16 accidents from January 2010 to September 2011, which resulted in 3 deaths.

Second is Valisno Express with 14 accidents, followed by Rainbow Express with 8 and Admiral Transport with 7.

According to the LTFRB, they will conduct an investigation on these companies and will require them to submit an explanation as to why they are involved in so many accidents.

The said bus companies are facing a possible cancellation of their franchise if they fail to provide a satisfactory explanation.

The LTFRB intends to release a report every 3 months.

But bus operators complained that the list is somewhat unfair since they report every incident, regardless of whether the accident is their fault or not.

Also, authorities always run after operators and their franchises when it could be just the driver's fault.

Alexander Yague, Provincial Bus Operators Association president, said authorities should come up with a policy that would also suspend or cancel the licenses of delinquent drivers to make sure that they don't transfer and get hired by other bus companies.

First aid techniques

The National Center for Commuter Safety and Protection (NCCSP), along with the provincial bus operators, the Department of Transportation and Communication and Red Cross signed a memorandum of agreement that would allow bus drivers and conductors to undergo a 2-day seminar on first aid administration and techniques.

The program aims to change the image of bus drivers.

The NCCSP and the provincial bus drivers believe that most drivers tend to run away from a scene due to fear and their lack of knowledge on what to do and how to address and handle such a situation.