2,988 vehicles towed, clamped in Bacolod; over P824K collected from violators

Patrick Lacson, officer-in-charge of BTAO
Patrick Lacson, officer-in-charge of BTAO

A total of 2,988 vehicles were towed and clamped by the Bacolod Traffic Authority Office (BTAO) and Metro Towing Services (MTS) that were illegally parked in various areas of Bacolod City from January 1 to February 29.

BTAO and MTS also collected a total of P824,450 in two months of implementing the City Ordinance No.09-17-818 or an ordinance establishing the two-away zones in the various streets of the city.

Patrick Lacson, officer-in-charge of BTAO, said from January 1 to 31, a total of 1,545 vehicles were towed and clamped, and another 1,443 vehicles from February 1 to 29.

He said from January to February 21, MTS collected a total of P505,100 from various traffic violators and P319,350 collected by BTAO for the same period.

He added the violators were given citation tickets to pay their penalties at the City Treasurer’s Office.

Lacson noted that for towing, the vehicle owners will pay P1,000; P600 for clamping; and the impounding fee is P200 per day in the first and second months; P350 per day in the third and fourth months; and P500 per day in the fifth and sixth months.

Lacson admitted that they received several complaints about their operations, but it’s their job and they have the support of Mayor Alfredo Abelardo Benitez.

“We are authorized to clamp and issue tickets for the traffic violators in the city with the personnel of MTS for the towing of vehicles,” Lacson said.

He said that under the memorandum agreement between the city and the MTS, 25 percent of the collection would go to the coffers of the city and 75 percent to the private towing firm.

Lacson stressed that their operations improved the traffic situation in the city, especially in the main thoroughfares.

He said most of the traffic violators were not residents of Bacolod City.

“About 80 percent of the traffic violators were residents of the neighboring cities and municipalities in Negros Occidental. Maybe, they were unaware of the local traffic laws,” he added.

Lacson also admitted that they have lapses in the putting up of signages for the towing and clamping of vehicles, but they already improved it.

He said he was also informed that the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP)-Negros Occidental chapter is eyeing to file charges against them for their intensified campaign against traffic violators.

“It’s a welcome development and we respect them. We are only implementing the local laws and we will conduct a massive campaign in schools, hospitals among others (regarding the implementation of clamping and towing of vehicles),” he said.*

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