‘Cellphone’ use while driving banned


ROXAS City – The City Council has approved an ordinance banning the use of cellular phones while driving.

Known as “An Act to Prohibit and Penalizing Reading, Composing and Sending Electronic Messages, Receiving and Sending Calls While Driving, and For Other Purposes,” the ordinance was authored by Councilor Powell del Rosario, chair of the Committee on Transportation and Communication.

The ordinance aims to instill discipline on the drivers, provide safety for both drivers and pedestrians and prevent accidents.

Devices banned while driving include wireless telephones, two-way radios, “walkie-takies,” pagers and beepers.

The use of mobile communication devices are banned on drivers of “engine-driven vehicles such as, but not limited to, automobiles, trucks, vans, buses, jeeps, motorcycles and tricycles.”

Also included are agricultural machineries, construction equipment, two-wheeled vehicles like bicycles, and other modes of transportation.

Exempted from the ban are law enforcement officers and operators of emergency vehicles who may not have other means of communication while on duty.

Violators will pay P500 for first offense, P1,000 for second offense, P2,000 for third offense, and P5,000 for fourth offense.

“In line with the thrust of the city government to make the city a livable and workable environment for all and to promote and safeguard the life and property of the people, the City Council recognizes the urgent need to stop the rampant usage of mobile phones and other electronic gadgets while driving any vehicle,” said the ordinance.

The new ordinance stressed that accidents due to cellphone use while driving do not only kill drivers, but also passengers and pedestrians, not to mention damages on properties, roadside structures and facilities, and other vehicles./PN