PUJs earn public’s ire for cutting trips to avoid flooded south

COMMUTERS have complained against southbound public utility jeepneys (PUJs) that cut trips.

Although not an unusual occurrence, since many PUJs do this every day, the situation on Friday, Oct. 4, 2019, was made worse by the heavy rain that fell and flooded the southern part of Metro Cebu.

Nelson (not his real name) told SunStar Cebu that some PUJs didn’t proceed to the destinations stated in their signboards. Many drivers stopped in Barangay Tabunok in Talisay City or in Barangay Bulacao in Cebu City.

He said he has noticed the same problem for the last year but nothing has been done to address it.

“We are requesting authorities to take action as a lot of commuters suffer as a result. Instead of being able to save, we end up spending more because of trip-cutting PUJs,” Nelson said.

Some commuters also complained that PUJ drivers refused to bring them to their destinations last Friday or would not let them board the jeepneys.

The drivers’ excuses were either they were on their way to eat or they were not proceeding to the town of Minglanilla or the City of Naga, they said.

Retired Police Col. Andres Bayarcal, Cebu City Transportation Office operations chief, said traffic enforcers can issue citation tickets to PUJ drivers caught cutting trips.

Trip-cutting, according to Cebu City’s traffic ordinance, is punishable by a penalty of P6,000.

Due to complaints from commuters, Bayarcal plans to deploy enforcers on Monday, Oct. 7, to apprehend violators.

While they regularly apprehend and penalize trip-cutting PUJ drivers, traffic enforcers of the City of Talisay-Traffic Operations and Development Authority (CT-Toda) decided to focus their efforts on normalizing traffic from Talisay City to Minglanilla last Friday. The area experienced a traffic gridlock due to flooding caused by the heavy downpour.

Jonathan Tumulak, CT-Toda chief, said knee-high water covered the highway from Barangay Linao in Talisay City to Barangay Lipata in Minglanilla. (from BBT, FMD of Superbalita Cebu/JKV)


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