Safety vest for riders in a hurry

The MANDATORY wearing of the reflective vest is pushed in Baguio City in order to limit road accidents.

The city council introduced an ordinance requiring all motorcyclists, e-bikes, scooters and cyclists to wear high-visibility reflective vests or vests when moving on the roads and streets of the city of Baguio from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. . Violators will be penalized.

The measure, drafted by councilor Elaine Sembrano and expected to be adopted before the end of the year, aims to prevent road accidents caused by human error.

Sembrano said it was necessary to enact the ordinance to protect motorists, passengers and pedestrians.

The measure also obliges any riders or passengers who carry with them a backpack that has a reflector or visible material large enough for easy visibility.

The High Visibility Reflective Vest is personal protective equipment designed to provide high visibility and reflectivity. It is worn by a biker and a passenger to make them more visible when traveling on the road.

Patricio Evangelista of United Metro Baguio Benguet Transport Operators and Drivers Federation raised the idea during a public consultation in October, saying high-visibility vests should also be worn in inclement weather when crossing city roads.

Roberto Aquino Macagba, founder of Brotherhood of Riders Advocate Discipline Equity Respect and Safety (Braders) and governor of Cordillera Motorcycle Riders Federation Incorporated, said even before the ordinance was written, members of the group were using vests at all times. when they crossed in and out of the summer capital.

“It started out as a part of our uniform, as a banner for the group. At that time, safety and visibility issues were not yet an issue. With my group we were lucky to have it. already and wearing it. From different driving safety seminars we have learned the true essence of wearing the vest and its importance, that is, it adds visibility to the rider, especially at night. or even in a foggy place. It is also a deterrent for the driver of the ibang in Hindi kami nakita, “he added.

Currently, the group has 1,200 members.

Asked for comment, the traffic management chief of the Baguio City Police Bureau (BCPO), Police Major Oliver Panabang, said the measure would be of great help given the situation in the city. , which is experiencing fog.

He said the high-visibility vests allow riders to notice motorcyclists crossing during zero visibility.

“We will also follow the existing ordinance of San Fernando, La Union that all motorcyclists must wear a reflective vest while traveling and on board the motorcycle. As long as it is reflective that can be easily seen and spotted by others motorists, “he added.

Meanwhile, Benguet province this year passed a law on the compulsory use of reflective vests to reduce cases of road accidents involving bikers and motorists.

Provincial council member Fernando Balaodan said all motorists should wear the reflective vest when traveling in the province, especially when road visibility is poor.

“Road transport injuries continue to be the leading cause of death among young people and the elderly. Benguet province recognizes the need for political action to reduce motorcycle, tricycle and bicycle accidents that have resulted in physical injury and even death, ”Balaodan said.

Data from the World Health Organization in 2018 showed that motorcyclists are among the most vulnerable road users along with pedestrians, and they contribute to more than half of all road deaths.

Francis Almora, director of the Land Transportation Office-Cordillera, said the agency would support anything that helps keep motorists safe.

Almora said that even before the proposed measure was created, riders would wear a high-visibility vest with the motorcycle club logo on it.

“This would improve the visibility of the rider. It would give sufficient warning time to other motorists to react in the event the rider slipped, when the road is slippery and it would give sufficient time for other motorists to react safely. is really helpful, ”Almora says.

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