Less talk, take breaks: Safety tips for long drives this Holy Week


Posted at Apr 05 2023 02:30 PM | Updated as of Apr 05 2023 02:38 PM

MANILA — Tens of thousands of Filipinos are expected to travel to their hometowns this Holy Week for the long holiday weekend. 

The Land Transportation Office (LTO) on Wednesday gave the following safety tips for motorists going on long drives.  

  • Check your vehicle before the trip. 

LTO chief Jay Art Tugade said oil changes, tune-ups, and tire pressure checks are important, especially for public utility vehicles (PUV) to ensure the security and safety of all the passengers on board. 

  • Reload your RFID load if you are going to pass through expressways. 
  • Do not text and drive. 

The Anti-Distracted Driving Act penalizes drivers caught using mobile devices to send or read texts, make or receive calls, play games, watch movies, surf the internet, and read e-books, among others. 

Fines range from P5,000 to P20,000, plus revocation of driving license on the fourth offense. 

  • Minimize chit-chat while driving. 

While long road trips can get boring, animated conversations "can be as distracting as using a cellphone," Tugade said. 

"When you’re on driving duty, make sure your number-one priority is still bringing your passengers to their destination safely and in one piece," he added. 

  • Observe the speed limit. 

The LTO released the following guide on speed limits. 

  • Get 8 hours of sleep. 

It is important that drivers going on long drives have enough sleep as "fatigue can make it harder to drive safely," said Tugade. 

At least 8 hours of sleep helps with quick reflex, the LTO said. 

  • Take regular breaks.

Don’t eat on the go. While a drive-thru may be convenient, multitasking behind the wheel takes your attention off the road, the LTO chief said. 

  • Keep emergency kits in your vehicle. 

Car charger, first-aid kit flashlight, jumper cables, candles, and matches may be useful if something happens on the road, said the LTO. 

Drivers and passengers are also advised to bring biscuits, water, and blankets. 

The LTO earlier declared said it was on heightened alert between March 31 and April 10, which meant all its traffic enforcers would be deployed in major thoroughfares. 

Tugade said his agency would conduct surprise inspections in terminals, assist motorists in need, and inspect public utility vehicles during this period. 

Video from PTV​