DOTr suspends implementation of Anti-Distracted Driving Act

The Department of Transportation (DOTr) has suspended the implementation of Republic Act 10913 known as the Anti-Distracted Driving Act which prohibits motorists from using mobile devices and electronic gadgets, Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) board member and spokesperson Aileen Lizada said Tuesday.

The move comes after various sectors such as members of Congress, transport groups and some drivers of public and private vehicles called for its suspension due to the confusion brought about by its implementing rules and regulations (IRR).

Among the concerns raised are the banning of rosaries, figurines and other accessories on dashboards which distract the view of drivers as well as the use of navigational apps while driving.

The law prohibits motorists making or receiving calls, writing, sending or reading text-based communications, playing online games, watching movies, surfing or browsing the Internet, among others, while vehicles are in motion or temporarily stopped on a traffic light or an intersection.

Drivers are allowed, however, to apply hands-free function or applications in using such devices or gadgets as long as they do not obstruct with their line of sight.

Violators will be penalized with a fine of PHP 5,000 for the first offense, PHP10,000 for the second offense, and PHP15,000 for the third offense with a three-month suspension of driver’s license.

Violations incurred beyond the third offense shall be penalized with the revocation of driver’s license and a fine of PHP20,000.

Owners and operators of public utility vehicles (PUV) and commercial vehicles found in violation of the said act shall both be held liable. (PNA)