The worsening traffic congestion of the city streets cannot solely be blamed to the existence of tricycles since there are only 2, 500 franchises issued every year from 1996 according to the Traffic Management Office.
The main traffic obstacles are the big cargo trucks which city hall allows to ply the main streets because of pressures from businessmen on election year. The public is prejudiced. The diversion road is not yet used. And the public is suffering. Why is city hall punishing the road users?
Another sad fact is many franchise holders are exceeding their limits in tricycle ownerships because lots of franchises have been illegally sold to other people and the City knows this and are tolerating it.
There are also colorum drivers who drive “as extras” at night till dawn just to earn a few bucks even if they are not legally registered as the drivers of such tricycle.
Hence, the number of tricycles units has stayed at 2, 500, in fact, the number of tricycles actually operating dropped further as some franchise holders merely renewed them without actually using the unit or have surrendered the same. Some were sold to third parties.
According to Mr. Danny Atillo of the TMO, the traffic congestion can be also be partly attributed to the increasing number of private vehicles and motorcycles many of them parked illegally in the city’s already narrow streets particularly during ,rush hour.
It is also to be considered that the city has a growing population confined in the smallest Local Government Unit in Negros Oriental being the center of trade and commerce.
That is the why, the Discipline Zone Project was implemented to clear all obstructions in a major strip of national road from the city limit in Sibulan until Robinson Dumaguete.
The TMO is also firm in its policy to impose sanctions and penalized tricycle drivers who are guilty of offenses such as refusal to convey passengers, overloading, discourtesy, overcharging, reckless driving, etc provided that formal complaints are filed and appropriate investigations establish the liability of the drivers. Mayor Felipe Antonio Remollo along with the members of the Bids and Awards Committee have already been presented with at least two proposals for a traffic lights system in the city, which would be the next big project of the administration after the awarding of the multi-million contract to PLDT for the installation of 330 CCTV cameras in major streets that is expected to be completed in March or June 2019. The CCTV system will help the administration monitor and manage traffic.