The North Luzon Expressway (NLEx) management is currently causing the repairs and retrofittting jobs on the portion of the super highway going to Metro Manila, particularly the Candaba Viaduct portion. The said portion of the road connects Bulacan and Pampanga.

The Candaba Viaduct is an elevated portion of the said expressway. Technically, it is a long bridge that is vital to motorists going to and from Manila and Central Luzon. Daily, it caters to thousands of motorists who opt to travel through a toll road than to pass by the Mc Arthur Highway or the local road.

Due to the said on-going repairs, overloaded vehicles exceeding the 33-ton gross vehicle weight threshold are banned from passing the viaduct to avoid any accident and to keep the bridge from falling down due to overloaded vehicles. Among these are the number of giant dump trucks carrying sand or soil to Metro Manila for construction purposes.

Recently, Pampanga Governor Dennis "Delta" Pineda appealed to the management of the NLEx for a moratorium on the ban so that said trucks be allowed temporarily to pass through the viaduct while looking for other means to solve truckers' dilemna in going to Metro Manila using the expressway.

It is worthy to note that the NLEx, while it is a toll road, is the fastest and still the more economical way to pass through in going to the National Capital Region. Because of the on-going repairs of the viaduct, vehicles exceeding the 33-ton limit would have to find alternative routes which will mean additional expenses for truckers.

In other words, Gov. Pineda is taking into consideration, through his appeal, the economy of Pampanga and the plight of the truckers should the latter's vehicles be banned from passing through the viaduct. His appeal however was denied due to reasonable technical reasons of the engineers conducting repairs.

The solution to the ban has finally surfaced through the cutting of the dump boxes of trucks thus reducing their gross vehicle weights. This means that they would be allowed to pass through the viaduct since they are not overloaded anymore.

Cutting it short, safety on the road for motorists and bridge repairmen has prevailed over the economy of Pampanga truckers. The imposition of the ban is justified.


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