Borderline criminal: Contribution of Manila’s public buses to traffic congestion

Traffic flow on Metro Manila’s main arteries is routinely being jammed by public utility buses loading and unloading indiscriminately in the middle of the road. This is one of the obvious problems plaguing the country that Filipinos are seemingly too stupid to do anything about.


We tolerate public utility buses loading and unloading indiscriminately in the middle of the road — an obvious problem that begs an obvious solution that strangely swamps the intellectual faculties of the country’s foremost “thought leaders”.

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manila_trafficRecently, Filipinos had been up in arms over a hare-brained proposal issued by the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB)…

“We have to give priority to the public utility vehicles since private cars can find other roads apart from EDSA,” LTFRB board member Ariel Inton said in an interview yesterday.

Inton proposed that a private vehicle will not be allowed on EDSA from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. four days a week, but allowed to pass through other roads.

All vehicles will be allowed along EDSA and other roads from 9 a.m. onwards.

Clearly, the wrong parties are being made to suffer for the sins of what really is the big elephant in the room — often criminally-insane public utility bus drivers who wreak further havoc to the already untenable traffic situation in Metro Manila’s roads.

What makes Metro Manila’s privately-run buses so special that their practices are virtually immune to scrutiny? The plot thickens…

[Photos courtesy Towie Vasquez and Boylit De Guzman.]

20 Replies to “Borderline criminal: Contribution of Manila’s public buses to traffic congestion”

  1. Ban all PUB’s along Edsa and put in dedicated-lane electric/CNG trams on both sides of Edsa. This country apparently has a lot of money. Ask Butch Abad…

  2. Do those people have shit for brains???

    This is just about the most idiotic proposal I have heard. The guy should be put down on the spot. He is obviously a walking, taking Zombie.

    The LTFRB can’t stuff their corrupted pie holes with money from private vehicles, that is why they brain fart such nonsense syllables.

    The pictures you posted are brilliant and one wonders what they have traffic cams for.

    These buses and bus companies caught on camera, blocking traffic like that should be immediately suspended from service and fined a penalty that will make their asshole heads spin.

  3. The guy took some CA$H ? The jeepney’s are rambling wrecks that are usually unfit for service.Safety inspections that deny the right to operate on the public roads could get these jalopies off the streets but the inspectors are all corrupt.

    The entire society is one scamm after another.
    A population that can never get ahead in life and so it continues to go the corruption route, the slow lane to the shit-house.


    Question:How many people can fit on a Filipino jeppeny?
    Answer:At least, One more!)

  4. Allowing jeepney’s to just STOP, anywhere they want to is just about the most idiotic practice to ever visit a city.This one circumstance gets changed and a semi-solution is found, immediately. it is not rocket-science but too obvious for Filipino’s to grasp?

    The Philippines is so screwed up that anyone who ever goes there never wants to go back, they beaches, well, beaches are all over the planet.

    1. not only that. when jeepneys and buses comply and only load and unload passegners on bus stops and jeepney stops, they occupy at least two lanes, thereby creating chokepoints. Clearly this shows that there are too many buses and jeepneys in the metropolis. Fine during rush hour at times there doesn’t seem to be enough, but during the hours in between their numbers should be greatly reduced. There are too many empty public vehicles on our roads during those hours! Only a blind man can’t see that!

  5. Impotence is the not-so-hidden cost and byproduct of corruption.

    Let’s face it these regulators have probably been bought by the bus operators and are so far up their ass. They refuse to apply the proper regulations in a way that would negatively affect their patron’s business. So, they (bus operators and regulators) shit all over the public with their beyond stupid ideas (really eliminate all private cars from EDSA, which is a PUBLIC HIGHWAY maintained with taxes FROM THE PUBLIC). These dogs are so eager to serve their masters, it’s pathetic.

    I don’t think the regulators are stupid (benefit of the doubt), sadly they are bought. However, when will the Philippine elite, here the bus operators (the masters), realize that maintaining a corrupt system leads to incompetence and will lead to more costs in the long run? No these a-holes are short-sighted and think only of getting their way…even if that means only PUBs will be allowed to use EDSA at rush hour. Think about how selfish these people are? Makes you want to take up arms…One can dream.

    Or Maybe all EDSA car users should give them what they want? A kind of up-yours-this-is-what-you-want-so-we’ll-give-it-to-you middle class public action? What if for one day we all stop using cars and try to get to work using public transportation only to test this car-less EDSA theory? Or being the passive people that we are, what if we just let this stupid no car on EDSA rule pass and watch the resulting chaos? This would expose the utter inadequacy of our public transportation infrastructure.

    1. @ RRR, good points kid. Nothing will change as the people are clue-less and have no nerve to do anything that could threaten the Elites.

      Because of the total corruption in the country, the Military and Police force are under-armed and ill-prepared for any mass protests that could lead to a real change, but still even as Ted Locsin Jr. encourages the people to ‘Topple the Administration’, Filipino’s can muster only a few students throwing paper.

      1. about toppling the administration… i really don’t see how that cannot be done without some type of violence occurring whether by the administration or the people trying to topple it?

        as for toppling the admin thru people power the people much like a high school boy who has jerked off five times on a summer break day are all out or people power juice.

        But really the people should forgive themselves and try again because it is the elite of the country that let us down. Twice we gave these idiots a chance to change things (Aquino then Gloria) and twice they betrayed us.

        When I think about this I(disclosure: this gets geeky) can’t help but remember Lord of the Rings. Isildur (to us Cory and to a lesser extent Gloria) was given a chance to destroy the evil ring (corruption and bad governance) and was at the mouth of the volcano needing only to toss the ring into the fire (enact true change) but they instead chose to wear the evil ring. So, bad governance, corruption, incompetence and criminal stupidity was allowed to persist (more so Cory).

        I think the next people power revolt should be based on clear principles and not centered on members of the elite who we think will save the Philippines.

        1. @ Triple r , the unfortunate truth is that the only way to rid the country of the people destroying it are to get rid of them. Do you see them leaving on their own accord? NO, of course not, and they will not as it is better than living like a dog.

          Filipino’s are not going to change anything, they coud if they stood as one and showed willingness to do ANYTHING that has to be done, but they will not. and so, nothing will change !

  6. In any choke point along edsa, these buses and jeepneys are causing the heavy traffic than can span a few kilometers. Once you get pass all the buses and jeepneys jamming multiple lanes in pasay rotonda, ayala, guadalupe, and ortigas, there is virtually no traffic until the next choke point. That’s my daily route to work for many years now so i know what i’m talking about. That is the situation daily. Funny thing is, when there are foreign delegates in the country traffic moves smoothly. Pwede naman palang magawan ng paraan, kailangan pa bang may mga bisitang foreigners para lang kumilos?

  7. Public buses are special, because they made PNP Chief Purisima & his cahoots very rich. There is no traffic Police to enforce traffic rules. Every Bus driver or Jeepney driver , is for himself…no traffic rules followed, no Traffic Police in sight. The “Police Tongs” have worked itself for the chaos…what can we expect?

  8. here’s a simple solution. fine/arrest the commuters for loading and unloading in the wrong place. The commuters have no large union that can protest or lobby. Even if the commuters end up bribing the authorities dont tell me that that will not tend to discourage the commuters

    1. @vm: That is a hair brained scheme if I have ever heard it. To me, the government needs to invest in terminals for the buses and jeepneys to pick up and unload its passengers. They should not be allowed to stop to unload or pick up on the street itself. pedicabs can ferry people on back streets to their final destination. Also, stop paying the bus drivers based upon how many they pick up. This encourages them to overload and waste time waiting for every seat to fill before they begin their trip.

  9. The concerned parties could’ve easily junk this proposal after its stupidity sink in (IF they are thinking). It’s already out there so somebody “wise” must have seen its “potential”.

    Just looking at the photo would make one think that there should be a limit on the number of operating public utility vehicles specially buses (since it covers a third or a quarter of the road, half on narrower spaces) depending on how much the road could take at a given time. There should be a limit on the place where they could only operate. As of today, there should be no additional PUVs anymore while the permit of those who’d disobeyed the law, who’ve murdered several lives by reckless driving should’ve been dismissed (these are just plan B while real solutions are still far from our leaders’ mind. It’s hard when people hated math and planning and left application of scientific method in school). LTFRB must be thinking of a travel by public utilities only scheme. It’s natural given that Filipinos have no discipline so they won’t have it if they are controlled so goodbye government transit plans. Add to the injury the pro-mahirap stay-mahirap kind of government that we have that keeps the pasang-awa officials winning so why change the customary system?

    Only Sen. Poe took the MRT/PUV challenge to heart, right? Perhaps they wanted those in “important” position to commute after all. 3:D

  10. Both the operators and commuters are at fault in our sorry traffic condition. What we have here is a deeper problem that festers within the Filipino consciousness.

    A typical thought process for any Filipino motorist in committing a traffic offense would be :”If I can get away with it, then screw the rules! No cop’s or MMDA’s watching me anyways. I don’t
    care about the guy behind me while I load or unload my passengers in the middle of the intersection.”

    Contrast that thought to some other motorist in our more developed counterparts… Which goes like this: “I won’t violate the rules since my actions
    may impact other motorists negatively.”

    Rules laws and regulations here in our country are only for show. Laws are poorly written and much less poorly, if not even implemented at all for that matter.

    Some moron cuts your line while you wait for your MRT ride and no one bats an eye. Actually penalize a violator for an offense and everyone throw a hissyfit on the violation of their “freedom and human rights”, immediately they cry “martial law” all over again. No wonder law holds no meaning in this country.

    Until that transformation in the thoughts of ordinary folk happens, nothing will work.
    That’s the biggest hurdle that seems to overwhelm pea-sized Filipino brain.

  11. Gawing simple ang transportation sector gaya sa Singapore. Ezlink Cards for buses, mrts, taxis. Salaried employees ang bus drivers. Numbered bus routes with predetermined bus stops. Demerit point system for drivers licenses. Simpleng sistema.

    Hahaha. Asa pa. #hopelessPinas

    1. mahirap yan. nakatatak na ang jeepney, pedicab, tricycle, bus, taxi ran by private owners. marami mawawalan ng trabaho.

      not unless kung open port ang pinas 100% FDI para magtayo ang mga foreign companies ng businesses dito. kahit factory ng chocolate manual labor para may relocation ang mga mawawalang ng trabaho. then pwede nang gawin ang ideya na yan. hehe

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