The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) tightens requirements for Public Utility Vehicle (PUV) operators, drivers, and conductors in applying for Special Permits (SP) to operate in areas under General Community Quarantine (GCQ).
Per Memorandum Circular No. 2020-019, guidelines are in effect throughout the operations of PUVs. The following conditions for operators, drivers, and conductors before and after operations at the terminal/garage are as follows:
1. For Operators, prior to dispatch, all safety officers must regularly examine the drivers’ fitness to work by checking their body temperature and screening/detecting symptoms any symptoms of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). Only those allowed outside of residence under the Inter-Agency Task Force (I-ATF) guidelines are allowed to drive or be a conductor. Should a driver show symptoms of COVID-19, he/she shall be prohibited to report to work and shall be subjected to quarantine immediately.
2. Aside from the routine pre-dispatch inspection, bus units shall be sprayed with disinfecting agent;
3. Operators must regularly check the availability of the thermal scanner in each bus units upon dispatch.
Conditions during operations subject to compliance are as follows:
1. Drivers and conductors shall wear masks and gloves at all times.
2. Commuters are required to wear masks in order to be allowed to board a PUV (No Face Mask, No Ride)
3. If Omnibus Franchising Guidelines (OFG) compliant units, preferably with Automated Fare Collection System (AFCS) facility in collecting the fare.
4. For those without AFCS, PUB conductors shall collect fares prior to boarding.
5. All buses must be equipped with thermal scanners while plying the route for the checking of body temperature of all passengers prior to boarding. Those with body temperature of 38 degrees centigrade or higher shall not be allowed to board the vehicle. Hence, commuters with fever are not advised to travel.
6. Vehicles shall be disinfected every end of each trip with all surfaces (especially seats, armrests, handles) wiped down with disinfecting agent.
7. All frequently touched areas or surfaces of the vehicle such as but not limited to seats, armrests, handles shall be disinfected at least once every three (3) hours if the vehicle is in continuous operation.
8. Operators/Drivers should provide a foot-disinfectant or foot bath for passengers prior to boarding.
9. Physical distancing must at all times be observed inside the PUVs. Thus, passenger load must not exceed 50% or half of the vehicle’s seating capacity (excluding driver and conductor), passengers should be seated one seat apart; no standing passengers shall be allowed.
10. PUB operators shall install impermeable barriers to seal off the driver’s compartment and between rows of seats that are one (1) meter apart if they wish to maximize 50% passenger load.
11. Operators/Drivers shall put a marking on the seats of the PUBs where the passengers must occupy.
12. All safety officers must regularly examine the drivers’ and conductors’ fitness to work by checking their body temperature and screening/detecting any symptoms of COVID-19. Should a driver or conductor show symptoms of COVID-19, he/she shall immediately be prohibited to report to work and shall be subjected to quarantine immediately.
13. Operators/Drivers shall comply with all the IATF-EID resolutions in relation to the COVID-19 Pandemic in order to prevent the spread of the virus.
The formulation of the conditions to secure an SP includes provisions from previous MCs, such as safety guidelines from MC 2020-005 and MC 2020-005A, and current and existing guidelines of the I-ATF-EID.
LTFRB reminds PUV operators and drivers that failure to comply with the aforementioned conditions and guidelines shall be subjected to penalties under Joint Administrative Order No. 2014-01, such as payment of fines and/or cancellation of Certificate of Public Convenience (CPC) and Provisional Authority (PA).
From LTFRB Facebook post