CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines – The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board in the region (LTFRB-10) has warned taxi drivers from refusing passengers especially during the Yuletide season and told them to observe proper decorum when on the road.
The government agency issued the statements following a recent incident when a taxi driver declined a lady passenger.
“The pregnant passenger, who was also a nurse-frontliner, expressed her sentiments that she already boarded the taxi unit with her groceries when the driver refused to carry her to her destination and let her transfer to another taxi unit,” the LTFRB-10 posted on its Facebook page.
The driver’s action has caused much inconvenience on the passenger, it added.
Public utility vehicle drivers should not refuse to carry passengers and should consider as their utmost priority the safety and convenience of each passenger they serve, said Aminoden Guro, LTFRB-10 regional director.
“Should the said pregnant passenger continue to file her formal complaint, the LTFRB shall decide the case and the driver may be found to have violated the following: failure to convey passenger and discourteous driver,” Guro said.
Each violation has a penalty of P5,000 and the driver’s license shall also be forwarded to the Land Transportation Office for their appropriate action.
The LTFRB said the driver had “acknowledged his fault” and “sincerely apologized for his mistake and for the inconvenience that he has caused to the passenger”. It added the operator of the taxi was also present to personally ask for an apology to the passenger and promised to give a serious disciplinary action to his driver.
Guro said the parties have already settled when the passenger chose to withdraw her complaint and forgave the driver.
“She gave consideration to the driver since it is the Christmas season and the P10,000 penalty may be too burdensome to the driver and his family,” he said.
The complainant hoped that drivers will not refuse passengers since it is their duty to the public and that they should also give utmost attention to pregnant women, children and persons with disabilities. She also acknowledged there are more good drivers than bad ones.
Meanwhile, Guro reminded transport cooperatives and corporations to see to it that their drivers are mindful of the rules concerning public conveyance and do a background check when hiring potential drivers.
“It’s up to the operators to discipline their drivers. We don’t individually call out the drivers, it’s the operators whose attention we call every time there’s a complaint from the riding public,” he said. (davaotoday.com)LTFRB, Mindanao