Cavite LGU implements no-helmet policy amid killings
MANILA, Philippines – The Dasmariñas City government in Cavite province has implemented a no-helmet policy due to recent shooting incidents involving motorcyle riders.
Since Thursday night, August 24, motorcycle drivers have been prohibited from using helmets on all roads in the city except when driving along Aguinaldo Highway, Governor's Drive, and Paliparan-Salawag-Molino Road.
This is under Dasmariñas City Council Resolution No. 153-s-2017, which also set a speed limit of 20 to 40 kilometers per hour (kph) along city roads except the 3 highways.
Dasmariñas Mayor Elpidio Barzaga said 5 separate incidents involving motorcycle riders were reported in the villages of Salitran 2, Zone 4, San Dionisio, and Salawag since Monday, August 21.
As of this posting, two died while 8 were hurt in the shooting.
"(It was) indiscriminate killing without motive," Barzaga said.
The mayor said the city govenrment made the decision even if it runs counter to law that requires motorcycle riders to wear helmets.
"We are aware of the national law about the helmet policy that is why we apply only the no-helmet policy on the city and barangay roads where the maximum allowable speed is only 40 kph," Barzaga told Rappler in a text message.
The city also reimposed an ordinance banning the use of bonnets or any clothing material that will conceal the identity of the motorcycle driver. Checkpoints have been set up in various areas around the city.
"We have to balance the interest of the general public. This is just a temporary measure. The no-helmet policy and shall be lifted when the police shall certify that the existing danger is no longer present," said Barzaga.
All 75 barangay captains of Dasmariñas City and as well as members of the city's Peace and Order Council recommended the no-helment policy, he said.
The city has offered a P500,000-reward to anyone who can provide information that will lead to the arrest of the assailants.
Similar ordinance for Cavite?
Shooting incidents in the cities of Bacoor and Imus in Cavite have also been reported.
Cavite Governor Jesus Crispin "Boying" Remulla said the provincial government is eyeing a similar ordinance for the entire province.
"We are imposing a 40 kph [maximum speed] in the highways and maybe 30 kph in provincial and city roads," Remulla told Rappler in a text message.
He said that the provincial government is considering requiring motorcycle riders to wear "open-face helmets."
"Open-face helmets only. This was already under consideration since 3 weeks ago. Hope the Sangguniang Panlalawigan (Provincial Council) can vote by Tuesday on this ordinance," he said.
Remulla declined to comment on the shooting incidents as they were still under investigation.
The Motorcycle Helmet Act of 2009 mandates all motorcycle drivers and back riders are required to wear standard helmets to ensure their safety. (READ: What laws help keep road users safe in the Philippines?)
Local government officials, however, suspended the helmet law of the country in the past due to crime prevalence. (READ: With EJKs and crime, should motorcycle helmets be required?)– Rappler.com
In the Philippines, an average of more than 600 children died from road crash incidents from 2006 to 2015. Seat belts can save lives but infants and children need a more specific type of car seats for them in case of a road mishap.
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