No more switching rides? LTO studies proposal for stricter driving rules

Chiara Zambrano, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 03 2020 05:03 PM

MANILA - The Land Transportation Office (LTO) is developing a new and set of rules governing driver’s licenses in the Philippines, restricting drivers to specific vehicle types. 

Under the proposal, vehicle types will have unique codes and drivers could no longer switch rides without passing an exam for the kind they would drive.

If approved, the enhanced guidelines will be called the Driver’s License Code, which is eyed to amend the existing License Restriction Code that tends to lump together vehicle types only by their gross vehicle weight (GVW) and number of wheels.

“Ang kaibahan, for example mayroon kang Restriction Code na 1 sa existing, puwede kang mag-drive ng motorcycle without sidecar, puwede ka ring mag-drive ng tricycle or three-wheeled vehicle,” said Danny Encela, assistant chief of the LTO’s operations division.

(The difference, for example, is if you have an existing Restriction Code 1 now, you can drive a motorcycle without a sidecar, and you can also drive a tricycle or any three-wheeled vehicle.)

“But dito sa proposal natin, kapag motorcycle lang aaplayan mo, motorcycle lang ida-drive mo. 'Pag tricycle, tricycle only. Hindi ka puwedeng mag-drive ng motorcycle. 'Pag three-wheeled, three-wheeled lang.”

(But in this proposal, if you're applying for a motorcycle license, you can only drive a motorcycle. If tricycle, tricycle only. You cannot switch to a motorcycle. If you applied for driving a three-wheeled vehicle, you should drive only a three-wheeled vehicle.)

Encela added the existing License Restriction Code 2 - which allows the bearer to drive four-wheeled vehicles up to 4,500 GVW such as sedans and jeepneys - will also be split into separate codes under the proposed amendment.

The proposed amendments are still being reviewed for approval by the LTO leadership. Encela said he hopes that the Driver’s License Code will be given the green light within the year.

In the meantime, the LTO reminds motorists to respect existing license restriction codes which are listed on the LTO website:

  • Restriction Code 1 - may drive motorcycles and tricycles
  • Restriction Code 2 - may drive small four-wheeled vehicles such as cars, jeepneys, SUVs, and pickups with a GVW of up to 4,500 kgs
  • Restriction Code 3 - may drive large four-wheeled vehicles such as vans over GVW 4,500 kgs with manual transmission
  • Restriction Code 4 - may drive small automatic vehicles such as cars with GVW up to 4,500 kg; manual transmission vehicles not allowed
  • Restriction Code 5 - may drive delivery trucks with automatic transmission and with a GVW of up to 4,500 kgs; manual transmission not allowed
  • Restriction Code 6 - may drive articulated vehicles (such as trailer trucks) with a GVW up to 1,600 kgs
  • Restriction Code 7 - may drive articulated vehicles with a GVW from 1,601 kgs to 4,500 kgs
  • Restriction Code 8 - may drive articulated vehicles with a GVW of 4,501 kgs and above