Saturday, July 31, 2021

Aggressive drive vs. illegal parking

IN a few days, illegal parking in Cebu City may just be curbed.

The City Traffic Operations Management (Citom) warned motorists yesterday that it would be aggressive in towing illegally parked cars, motorcycles, trucks and other vehicles soon.

The traffic management office received a new tow truck from the City Government, which it will use to remove illegally parked vehicles from the streets round the clock.

Citom Director for Operations Jonathan Tumulak said the mayor ordered the towing of vehicles parked on no parking zones, which was identified as one of the causes of traffic congestion in the city.

“We are warning the public ahead that once the truck is deployed, we will have a city-wide operation against illegal parking, which we’ve seen causes heavy traffic. So everyone should just avoid parking on the road,” he told reporters yesterday.

Tumulak said motorists should just obey parking rules as a violation would be costly.

To recover a vehicle that has been towed, the owner has to pay Citom the P2,500 towing fee for a four-wheel vehicle and P1,500 for motorcycles, and the P500 fine for illegal parking.

“But if our records show that the driver or owner has unpaid fines for other traffic violations in the past, he or she will have to pay for all those fines. Otherwise, the vehicle will not be released,” said Tumulak.

The truck, which costs P5 million, is one of only two tow trucks of the City Government. The other truck is still under repair and may be in running condition by next month.

Unlike before, the towing of illegally parked vehicles is now exclusively undertaken by Citom, as the City Government has stopped contracting the services of private towing companies.

Tumulak assured the public that Citom will be reasonable when towing vehicles.

When Citom personnel see an illegally parked vehicle, it will call out the owner through a public address system.

The driver will be given up to 10 minutes to remove the car from the no-parking area, but will still be issued a ticket for the violation.

If the owner fails to remove the car, that’s when Citom will tow the truck.

The owner will be notified through a note, which Citom personnel will post on the wall or on the same spot where the vehicle was parked.

All towed vehicles will be brought to the City-owned lot at the North Reclamation Area or at the South Road Properties.

Motorists whose vehicles were towed need to go to the Citom office at the Ramos public market to verify their ticket.

Once verified, they will have to secure a bill, which may include fines for previous violations, and settle these at the cashier before the vehicle can be released.
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