EVERY day, Metro Manila roads are getting more dangerous.
THE Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) said that over 24,000 motorcycle accidents were recorded in 2022, a little lower than the 26,768 reported accidents in 2021.
This means there were 2,000 motorcycle crashes recorded every month. The number of deaths from these accidents was also down from 399 in 2021 to 258 in 2022, the MMDA said.
There appeared to be a decline in these cases, but the MMDA said more and more accidents go unreported to authorities. Thus, the total number of cases may be higher.
MMDA Chairman Romando Artes also said the number of motorcycle accidents could go up.
“It’s true that a large percentage of road accidents involve motorcycles, and we expect that to increase because the number of people who buy motorcycles continues to increase,” Artes said in a public briefing.
Driving in the Philippines is a challenge.
UK-based financial services and car insurance platform Confused.com said in a 2022 report that the Philippines ranked 13th out of 49 in the world’s most stressful cities to drive in. It had a stressful driving score of 68 next to Colombia.
This placement was higher compared to a 2021 study of another vehicle-blogging platform.
UK-based car-sharing platform Hiyacar said in a 2021 survey that Metro Manila ranked 17th out of 36 in the world’s most stressful cities to drive in next to Istanbul, Turkey.
The survey did not identify which of Metro Manila roads are prone to accidents.
The survey took into account the following elements when determining which roads were the most stressful: the ratio of cars per capita, the total number of vehicles in the city, the level of traffic congestion, the condition of the roads, the availability of public transportation, the frequency of traffic accidents, and the density of the city.
According to the survey, these cities contributed to the driving stresses of drivers as the roads are congested and accident prone. These roads also led to people getting stuck in traffic and being late to their appointments, the survey said.
World’s worst quality roads
A recent study by the World Economic Forum cited by UK-based financial services and car insurance platform Confused.com said that the Philippines is among the top 10 countries in the world with the worst road quality, with a score of 44.8 next to Argentina.
The MMDA said it would spearhead a free refresher course on traffic rules and regulations, traffic safety, and discipline under its Motorcycle Riding Academy in order to reduce the number of road accidents involving motorcycles.
A course on basic riding skills is also part of the program, the MMDA said.
The Motorcycle Riding Academy will teach drivers and riders about traffic laws and regulations, including proper discipline in operating motorcycles on the roads, avoiding accidents, and administering primary emergency responses, said Artes.
The dos and don’ts during street accidents will also be discussed, according to Artes.
Interested motorists may join the program for free, and it is expected to roll out in the first quarter of this year, he said.
Motorcycle lane update
Artes also said the MMDA hopes to complete the motorcycle lane along Commonwealth Avenue, Quezon City by mid-February.
He said the agency is now installing traffic signs and lane markings for the motorcycle lanes
A plan to put up motorcycle lanes along major thoroughfares in Metro Manila is also being studied, he said.
The MMDA approved the establishment of a motorcycle-only lane along Commonwealth Avenue in October 2022 as part of efforts to decongest traffic along the area.
Banner Photo Credit: Patrick Roque, via Wikimedia Commons