MANILA -- The Department of Transportation (DOTr) is studying the possible legalization of motorcycles for public transport, after the Supreme Court allowed law enforcement agencies to apprehend motorcycle drivers engaged in ride-sharing services.
Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade asked various agencies to form a technical working group (TWG) to discuss issues related to the use of motorcycles as public transport.
"The TWG will be comprised of representatives from the DOTr, Land Transportation Office, Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board, Philippine National Police–Highway Patrol Group, Metro Manila Development Authority, Senate, House of Representatives, commuter welfare groups, road safety advocates, motorcycle manufacturers, motorcycle organizations, and law schools," the DOTr said.
The DOTr said the group will determine the types of motorcycles that can be granted a franchise, the minimum engine displacement, speed of motorcycle taxis, franchise route, seat and helmet requirements, and training requirements for motorcyclists in ride-sharing services.
It will also discuss accountability for passenger safety in the event of an accident.
“How do we ensure the safety of the passengers? Should the motorcycle taxi crash while a passenger is on board, who will shoulder all expenses? If the driver himself is injured or dies, what is the motorcycle owner’s accountability? All these should be thoroughly studied,” Tugade said.
Motorcycle ride-hailing firm Angkas asked the Supreme Court on Friday to lift the temporary restraining order it issued in early December which allowed transport authorities to apprehend its riders.