MANILA - The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) on Thursday said it has to study a lawmaker's proposal to implement 3-digit number-coding scheme to reduce the volume of vehicles on the road.
Rep. Danilo Suarez's proposal needs further study as it might result to purchase of more cars especially as the Christmas season rolls in, said MMDA spokesperson Celine Pialago.
"Lalo na kapag -ber months maraming may kakayahan na bumibili ng sasakyan. Baka mawala yung purpose ng UVVRP," she said, referring to the Unified Vehicular Volume Reduction Program.
Under the current UVVRP, vehicles with plate numbers that end in 1 and 2 are off the roads from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Mondays; 3 and 4 on Tuesdays; 5 and 6 on Wednesdays; 7 and 8 on Thursdays; 9 and 0 on Fridays.
Suarez's proposal would add another digit to the weekday volume reduction. His bill does not determine what number will be added to a particular day of the week.
MMDA data show that around 600 to 800 were apprehended daily for coding violations since July this year.
Even if these violators were barred from the road, Pialago said it would create minimal impact because the volume of cars in Metro Manila has ballooned beyond the capacity of the roads, particularly its main thoroughfare, Epifanio delos Santos Avenue.
"For us, ang number-coding scheme ay temporary solution po yan. Ang solution po ay maayos na infrastructure, magandang public transport," she said.
The penalty for violating the number-coding scheme is only P300, and Pialago said vehicle volume reduction strategy may work better if the fine was increased.
"Yung Anti-Distracted Driving Act, first penalty dun P5k tapos second P10k then P15k. Yung huli namin, pakonti nang pakonti."
Pialago said the agency welcomes proposals to reduce traffic, but these will have to get the approval of the Metro Manila mayors before they can be implemented.