I'm a proud Pinoy! I am applauding Filipinos who are helping themselves, being part of the solution and trying to think and do ways to try and test new ideas for the benefit of the masses rather than those who won't give chances but are mostly complaining and not following through with their complaints.
If I would be given the chance to change the rules of traffic to help ease the flow of traffic around Metro Manila, here are my suggestions.
1. What if we make the office hours of certain offices/industries in different shifts, in that way traffic rush can be minimized. I suggest that some offices, depending on the industry, would have a shift from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m., 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Example: Government offices, retail companies (not just malls) can have the shift from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; while advertising agencies, research agencies and the like could work from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.; meanwhile manufacturing companies can work from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
2. There should be designated buses that are "terminal to terminal" only and reservations can be done online. Schedule of the departure of trips should be strictly followed, although arrival time may vary. Example (SM North Edsa to SM Makati with no drop-offs in between).
3. Ban private vehicles from plying MAJOR thoroughfares if the only person inside the car is the driver unless it is an emergency (to be determined). In that way, the owner of the car will find a way to share the road with a family member, a relative or a friend going to the same direction. Note: the companion or passenger should not be paying any fare. I am suggesting this because I think having a passenger will lessen the volume of commuters, reinstitute the value of sharing and hopefully having a companion while driving will lessen the possibility of accidents.
4. Barkers who usher commuters to ride jeep or buses for specific routes should be given a different role or abolished. In the first place, commuters can read or ask the bus conductor if they have questions, barkers don't have to bark at commuters to ride specific routes. They don't add value to the commuting public nor the transport system, instead buses and jeeps are forcibly indebted to them. Some of them even cause trouble to the bus or jeep that do not follow their "rules".
5. I suggest that rather than ask traffic violators to pay penalties, why not penalize traffic violators with community work like cleaning the streets or "esteros", planting a number of trees and doing social work at the place where the violation took place especially if they are repeat offenders/violators. The objective is for the violators to pay using their "time" rather than money so that there would be a lasting effect of the "penalty". If they won't complete the task given, then their license won't be renewed on their next renewal schedule until such time that they complete their task. This should also be implemented to commuters.
6. JICA identified 3 main causes of traffic in 1999, namely: bad driving habits, inadequate traffic enforcement and poorly coordinated infrastructure projects.
My suggestion for inadequate traffic enforcement. We have so many laws, implement everything or make things simple. Lawmakers, help!
7. My suggestion for poorly coordinated infrastructure projects. Coordination is the keyword here.
8. My suggestion for bad driving habits - change driving habits that are bad. Identify and change it.
I don't know why, but when I went to Davao and Palawan, although there are no traffic signals in every corner, the traffic is so smooth there. People are just generally kind and are letting and giving way for other vehicles to pass.
In other parts of the country, taxi cabs are giving exact changes and whenever there is a senior citizen passenger, they would deduct 20% automatically to their fare even if the cab is full and not all are senior citizens.
It's just sad that here in Metro Manila generally (not all), drivers are just thinking about the "money" and getting through. I know of a few who would put their hard earned money to gambling or casino after a day's work. Is it the right kind of habit?
What I am saying is, we should all take part in changing the nation by changing ourselves, our behavior and attitudes. Yes, a single peso is worth a lot to those who have none, but out of greed, that peso won't make anyone change their economic status. So why not, let it go and live a life with a happy conscience.
I for one is making sure that whenever I cross the road, I am where I should be, the pedestrian lane.