46 PUV drivers apprehended for not following health protocols

AROUND 46 public utility vehicle (PUV) drivers were apprehended by personnel of the Cebu Police Provincial Office (CPPO) on Saturday, Aug. 14, 2021, in various checkpoints across the Province.

Drivers of the 46 PUVs, mostly buses and minibuses, were apprehended for violation of Executive Order 35-B issued by Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia which orders PUVs to strictly implement minimum health protocols for their passengers.

Majority of those apprehended committed violations such as overloading, failure to provide a trip ticket and allowing passengers to ride on their units even though they didn’t have face masks or face shields on.

Col. Engelbert Soriano, CPPO director, said the apprehensions were necessary as a way to remind PUV operators and their drivers to implement strict health measures in light of the increasing number of Covid-19 cases in the Province.

Soriano said their personnel are on the streets for at least 13 hours and holding checkpoints to ensure that all PUVs passing by their town are compliant.

“We are strictly monitoring these PUVs since the transmission of Covid-19 often occurs in public transportation, especilally if the operator has not reminded his passengers to strictly follow the minimum health protocols,” Soriano said in a mix of English and Tagalog.

But Soriano said he remains baffled as to why there are still so many bus drivers that refused to follow the minimum health protocols despite Garcia’s mandate to apprehend them.

Soriano said their checkpoints will continue until the end of August or until the modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) status of 11 of Cebu Province’s local government units is lifted.

Meanwhile, Garcia along with police officials from the Province, conducted an inspection of checkpoints around Cebu to check if their policies were being implemented by PUVs. (AYB / JKV)