Driver in fatal road accident may lose license – LTO

NO TRAFFIC OFFICER? Where are the traffic auxiliaries manning this spot of the Sen. Benigno Aquino Jr. Avenue in Barangay San Rafael, Mandurriao, Iloilo City? A young woman crosses this pedestrian lane while vehicles are making a U-turn. This photo was taken yesterday, just three days after a couple was hit by a car in this area. Good thing this woman reached the other side of the avenue without getting hit. IAN PAUL CORDERO/PN

ILOILO City – The Land Transportation Office (LTO) in Western Visayas has suspended for three months the license of the driver whose sports car hit and killed a couple on Sen. Benigno Aquino Jr. Avenue in Barangay San Rafael, Mandurriao district on June 15.

But it may take a far more severe action against June Paul Valencia – the revocation of license.

According to Jojo Jamerlan, operations head of LTO Region 6, they have issued a show cause order to Valencia, 32, “to explain his side regarding the incident.”

“Gusto namon mabal-an kon there was really gross negligence on his part and if he is still fit to drive,” said Jamerlan.

Joe Marie Osano, principal of La Paz II Elementary School and wife Alnie Dinah, a Master Teacher at Ticud Elementary School also in La Paz district, were crossing the pedestrian lane when hit by Valencia’s Mazda MX5 sports car. They died of severe head and body injuries.

Jamerlan said Valencia was given five days to reply.

The show-cause order was delivered to the Valencia residence in Mandurriao yesterday.

If the result of LTO’s investigation shows Valencia is not anymore fit to drive, Jamerlan said, Regional Director Rolando Ramos will order the revocation of the driver license.

However, Jamerlan, the respondent can still appeal the LTO decision.

Meanwhile, Ramos reminded both motor vehicle drivers and pedestrians to slow down when approaching or crossing pedestrian lanes for safety reasons.

The June 15 accident has prompted Mayor-elect Jerry Treñas to revive the stalled intelligent transport or traffic system proposed as early as 2017 by then mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog as a long-term solution to traffic congestion and vehicular accidents.

But since this could not be instantly realized, Treñas bared easily implementable short-term solutions such as putting up grills from the spot where the couple was hit up to SM City Iloilo to prevent pedestrians from crossing the avenue; putting rumble strips a few meters before and after pedestrian lanes; duty hours of traffic aides must start early – 5. a.m. instead of the current 8 a.m.; and for all pedestrian lanes on the avenue to have traffic aides ready to assist pedestrians

“If there is a need to increase the penalties against those who do not follow traffic laws and ordinances, we would recommend such to the city council,” said Treñas./PN


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