DILG: Motorcycle backriding allowed during MECQ under certain conditions
With the suspension of mass public transportation in Mega Manila due to the modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ), the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) today said that motorcycle backriding or pillion riding will be allowed during the MECQ subject to certain conditions.
“Because of the prohibition on public/mass transportation under the current MECQ, motorcycle backriding is now allowed but only for authorized persons outside of residence (APORs) for them to be able to go to work provided that there is a physical barrier," DILG Secretary Eduardo M. Año said.
The DILG Chief also said that the operation of tricycles is subject to the guidelines of the Local Government Unit. “The LGU may also allow quarantine pass holders to ride in tricycles in going out to buy food or access essential services provided that there is only 1 passenger and that regular disinfection of the passenger seat is done by the driver,” he said.
Año said the first condition is the backride passenger must be an APOR and the travel is work-related. "Dahil walang masasakyan papunta sa mga trabaho, hindi na kailangang mag-asawa o magpartner. Basta work-related ang lakad at APOR ang passenger, pinapayagan nating magbackride sa ngayon," he said.
He said that the second condition is the driver is equipped or the motorcycle is installed with the prescribed barrier. "Importante pa ring masunod and basic health protocol which is physical distancing kaya kailangang andun pa rin yung baririer and of course, nakahelmet and mask," he said.
Two designs for motorcycle barriers have earlier been approved by NTF Covid-19. The first was the design of Bohol Governor Arthur C. Yap. The second design approved by the NTF is similar to a backpack worn and strapped on the driver initiated by motorcycle taxi platform Angkas.
The third condition for pillion riding, according to Año, is that the motorcycle is privately owned, is not for hire, and was not hired during the trip. "In short, bawal pa rin ang Angkas, Joyride at iba pang ride services. Pinapayagan lang namin ito ngayon para makapasok sa trabaho ang mga tao," he said.
He said the Philippine National Police has been given instructions to inspect proofs that the riders are APORs at checkpoints.
Año said the abovementioned conditions must be complied with together with the minimum health protocols like frequent handwashing, wearing of face masks, physical distancing, and proper hygiene.
“We heal as one. No one is exempt from the quarantine protocols. But let us lessen the burden on our tired frontliners. Time out muna sila pero tayo tuloy-tuloy lang,” he added.