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LTFRB suspends point-to-point bus services

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) suspended the services of the point-to-point bus system across Metro Manila on Friday, January 6.

In a post on the P2P Premium Bus Service Facebook page, the group said the suspension covered "P2P services from SM North, Trinoma, Eton Centris, SM Megamall and Glorietta 5 until further notice."

On Saturday, the P2P Premium Bus System said it would resume regular operations on Tuesday, January 10, after reaching an agreement with transportation officials.

It will also offer free rides from January 8 to 9.

Point-to-point buses carry passengers from one specific point to another without any stops. Buses depart on time based on a fixed schedule, whether or not the vehicles are full. 

LTO has no plates

The suspension of the P2P bus service appears to have been caused by a Department of Transportation investigation into a video showing a P2P bus without license plates.

RESPONSE. The Department of Transportation responds to a complaint regarding point-to-point buses. Screen shot from Facebook.

RESPONSE. The Department of Transportation responds to a complaint regarding point-to-point buses. Screen shot from Facebook.

The DOTr post said it "already alerted the Land Transportation Office (LTO) and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) in order to conduct a swift investigation on this matter."

They will "apply the necessary sanctions should they find out that the concerned operator/driver violated anything."

In an exchange on the post, Chris Bauer, CEO of Froehlich Tours and of the P2P bus operations, explained that their P2P buses did not have license plates because the LTO had no plates available "since early 2016." 

He added the buses were "registered with DOTr and LTFRB under the P2P project and the updated delivery list and deployment list have been communicated properly."

The DOTr administrator, responding to Bauer replied that sanctions would only be given if "the investigation finds out that you have violated anything. We need to show to the public that indeed, your buses carry valid registration, for the spirit of transparency, especially that someone aired his complaint."

The DOTr added, "There is no need to cease your operation if you are certain that you are not violating any rule. Thank you."

Despite this, the P2P bus service announced a suspension of their service, though it did not explain if it was a sanction or a preventative measure in light of the investigation.

On its own page, the bus company also apologized for the inconvenience and promised it would do its best to resume service and prove accusations wrong.

 

Rappler.com