NCRPO identifies checkpoint areas for Metro Manila quarantine

Robie de Guzman   •   March 13, 2020   •   4820

MANILA, Philippines – The National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) on Friday said it has identified areas in Metro Manila where checkpoints will be put up for the implementation of the month-long community quarantine starting Sunday, March 15.

In an exclusive report on UNTV’s Ito Ang Balita by correspondent Lea Ylagan, the NCRPO said checkpoints will be set up in major thoroughfares, exit and entry points of Metro Manila.

The checkpoints will be manned by police officers with the help of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).

The areas which will be monitored by the police and military are as follows:

RADIAL ROADS

  • Radial Road 1 – Roxas Boulevard, Manila–Cavite Expressway; City of Manila–Cavite
  • Radial Road 2 – Taft Avenue in Manila, Aguinaldo Highway in Dasmariñas; City of Manila–Batangas
  • Radial Road 3 – South Luzon Expressway in Muntinlupa, STAR Tollway, Tanauan City, Batangas; City of Manila–Batangas
  • Radial Road 4 – Kalayaan Avenue in Olympia, Makati, Kalayaan Avenue in Fort Bonifacio, Makati; City of Manila–Rizal
  • Radial Road 5 – Shaw Boulevard, Ortigas Avenue Extension in Cainta; City of Manila–Laguna
  • Radial Road 6 – Magsaysay Boulevard, Marikina–Infanta Highway in Marikina; City of Manila–Quezon
  • Radial Road 7 – España Boulevard, Commonwealth Avenue, City of Manila–Bulacan
  • Radial Road 8 – Dimasalang Street, North Luzon Expressway in Balintawak, Quezon City; City of Manila–La Union
  • Radial Road 9 – Rizal Avenue, MacArthur Highway in Pampanga; City of Manila–La Union
  • Radial Road 10 – Mel Lopez Boulevard; City of Manila–Bataan

The following Circumferential Roads in the cities of Manila, Makati, Malabon, Taguig as well as in Bulacan and Bacoor, Cavite will also be monitored by authorities:

CIRCUMFERENTIAL ROADS

  • Circumferential Road 1 City of Manila
  • Circumferential Road 2 City of Manila
  • Circumferential Road 3 Makati-Navotas–Pasay
  • Circumferential Road 4 Malabon–Pasay
  • Circumferential Road 5 Taguig-Malabon-Parañaque
  • Circumferential Road 6 Marilao, Bulacan-Bacoor, Cavite   

The NCRPO also said that checkpoint areas will also be set up in Expressway networks.

EXPRESSWAY  NETWORKS

  • E1 Quezon City to Rosario, La Union
  • E2 Makati to Batangas City and Muntinlupa to Bacoor
  • E3 Parañaque to Kawit
  • E5 Quezon City to Caloocan
  • E6 Parañaque to Pasay

According to NCRPO director Police Major General Debold Sinas, cops manning the checkpoints will be provided with complete gear to protect them against the virus.  

“Our people will be equipped ng mga needed [gears] kagaya ng mask, gloves, plus we will place police line in all the entry points,” he said.

The military, for its part, said it will provide assistance to the PNP in manning the checkpoints.

“The AFP will be in support to the PNP in terms of manpower. They will lead the checkpoints. We will augment them as necessary,” AFP chief of staff General Felimon Santos Jr.  

President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday announced that Metro Manila will be placed on community quarantine effective midnight of March 15 until April 14.

The declaration follows the raising of Code Red Sub-level 2 amid rising cases of novel coronavirus infections in the country.

During the month-long quarantine period, land, domestic air, and domestic sea travel to and from Metro Manila are suspended, subject to daily review of the government.

Work in the executive branch and classes in all levels in Metro Manila are also suspended.

Sinas, however, clarified that people from nearby cities and provinces who are working in Metro Manila will still be allowed entry as long as they present proof of employment – such as company ID – in designated checkpoints.

“Karamihan naman dito sa NCR ay hindi taga-NCR e, may taga-Cavite, taga-Bulacan kasi andoon ang mga bahay nila. Siguro, we’ll do the maximum tolerance tapos titingnan lang ang ID tapos pauuwiin kasi kung di mo pauwiin yan e san titira yan dito?” he said.

Private companies, however, are encouraged to implement a flexible work arrangement or a work from home set up for the meantime to protect their employees.

The NCRPO chief also said that the movement of people within Metro Manila will not be restricted as they can still go out to buy food and other necessities.

Mall and shop owners were earlier urged by authorities to continue operations. The delivery of goods and services will also be allowed as long as it follows regulations.

“Pwede naman yung goods and services basta dumaan ka sa checkpoint,” Sinas said.

Under the community quarantine, Foreign nationals from countries with localized COVID-19 transmissions will also be banned from entering the Philippines, except for permanent residents and diplomats.

Authorities said a clearer guidelines will be issued soon on the implementation of the community quarantine.

The Philippines has so far recorded more than 50 confirmed cases with five deaths. – RRD

Mabigat na trapiko at hirap sa pagsakay, bumungad sa unang araw ng GCQ sa Metro Manila

Robie de Guzman   •   June 1, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Mabigat na daloy ng mga sasakyan sa kahabaan ng EDSA ang bumungad sa mga motorista sa unang araw ng general community quarantine (GCQ) sa Metro Manila.

Ito ay dahil sa bulto ng mga pribadong sasakyan, pampasaherong bus na ginamit sa augmentation program ng Department of Transportation (DOTr), at mga taxi at transport network vehicle service na pinayagan nang bumiyahe sa ilalim ng GCQ.

Nakadagdag rin sa pagsisikip ng trapiko sa kalsada ang pag-arangkada ng point-to-point (P2P) buses, shuttle services ng mga kumpanya at mga bisikleta.

Nagsimula na ring gamitin ngayong araw ng mga pampasaherong bus ang innermost lane ng EDSA.

Pero hindi natapos ang loading at unloading bay areas sa ilalim ng MRT-3 stations kaya apat na istasyon lang muna ang hihintuan ng mga bus upang magsakay at magbaba ng mga pasahero.

Ito ay ang North Avenue station, Quezon Avenue, Ayala at Taft Stations.

Batay sa patakaran ng Inter-Agency Task Force, limitado lang ang bilang ng mga pasaherong maaaring sumakay sa mga pampublikong sasakyan pang masunod ang panuntunan sa physical distancing.

Hindi rin lahat ng ruta ng pampasaherong bus ang pinayagang magbalik-pasada kaya pahirapan ang pagsakay ng mga pasahero.

May ilang pasahero na inabot ng ilang oras sa paghihintay ng masasakyan habang may iba namang naglakad na lang papasok sa trabaho.

Ang construction worker na si Jonathan Suico, madaling araw pa umalis sa Rizal ngunit naglakad rin pagdating sa may EDSA-Shaw Boulevard dahil walang masakyang bus papunta sa kanyang trabaho.

“Pupunta sana dun sa dulo kung may bus, eh ang masama nga eh, wala po eh. Wala pong magagawa po ma’am eh. Maglalakad na lang po,” ani Suico.

Humingi naman ng pang-unawa ang DOTr sa publiko sa limitadong transportasyon.

Ipinaalala rin ng kagawaran na naka-community quarantine pa rin naman ang Metro Manila at hindi pa maaaring lubusang magbalik-operasyon ang sektor ng transportasyon.

“Humihingi rin kami ng inyong pag-iintindi kasi nga ho, ‘wag nating kalimutan na tayo ay quarantine pa rin ho… At ang nangingibabaw po sa pagdating sa kagawaran ng transportasyon, ay ang inyong kalusugan, ang inyong kaligtasan,” ani Transportation Assistant Secretary Giovanni Lopez sa isang panayam sa UNTV ngayong Lunes.

Samantala, sinabi naman ni Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) Chairman Martin Delgra III na pinag-aaralan na nila ang paglalagay ng bus stops sa Cubao at Ortigas Station kung saan malaki ang bulto ng mga pasahero.

“Nakita natin na full force ngayong araw yung mga bus na binigyan natin ng special permit so tuloy tuloy,” ani Delgra.

Tulad sa mga tren, limitado lang din sa 50-porsyento ng kapasidad ng mga pampublikong sasakyan ang bilang ng mga pasaherong maaaring isakay.

Dapat rin ay nasusunod sa mga ito ang physical distancing at iba pang health protocols upang maiwasan ang pagkalat ng coronavirus disease. – RRD (mula sa ulat ni Correspendent Harlene Delgado)

Cebu, Mandaue and Zamboanga cities placed under GCQ starting June 1

Marje Pelayo   •   June 1, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — Aside from Metro Manila, several areas have also been placed also under general community quarantine (GCQ) for 15 days starting Monday (June 1).

Based on the latest announcement by Presidential Spokesperson Secretary Harry Roque, these areas include the entire Region VII or Central Visayas particularly Cebu City and Mandaue City as well as Zamboanga City in Mindanao.

The decision to place these areas under GCQ came after their local governments appealed to the Inter-Agency Task Force against COVID-19 for a reclassification of quarantine status.

These areas are in addition to the previously announced regions and localities which will be under GCQ starting June 1, namely the National Capital Region, Pangasinan, Regions II, III, IV-A and Davao City.

Meanwhile, all other areas not mentioned will be placed under modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) starting next month. 

Therefore, starting Monday (June 1), two community quarantine measures will be implemented — the general community quarantine (GCQ) where most industries and economic sectors will be allowed to operate; and the modified general community quarantine (NGCQ) which is the last phase towards the transition to the ‘new normal.’ MNP (with details from Rosalie Coz)

TNVS gears up as operations resume on June 1

Aileen Cerrudo   •   May 30, 2020

The Transport Network Vehicle Service (TNVS) industry is already preparing for the resumption of operations on June 1 when Metro Manila finally shifts to General Community Quarantine (GCQ).

TNVS driver Noel Guimbaolibot has added plastic covers and disinfectant solutions in his car as part of the minimum health standards for public transportation.

Noel is looking forward to the resumption of operations since he hasn’t been able to earn for over three months because of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

He said he has to brave the risk of getting infected in order to earn for his loved ones.

“Sa ngayon, hindi pa naman nawawala iyong COVID-19. Ang pinakamaganda talaga ay lagi lang maging maingat. Magsuot ng face mask every time, mag-spray ng alcohol, (COVID-19 is not going away just yet. It would be best to always be careful. Wear a face mask and spray alcohol),” he said.

Grab PH will be implementing new protocols for their partner-drivers in accordance with the directives of the Department of Transportation (DOTr).

Before being allowed to operate, Grab PH’s partner-drivers will have to answer a checklist to determine if they are fit enough to operate. They will also undergo training to make sure they are following health protocols.

Cashless system will also be encouraged to avoid direct contact. Drivers will also be allowed to cancel their booking if the passenger is not wearing a face mask. Likewise, passengers may also cancel their booking if the driver is not wearing a face mask.

Grab PH president, Brian Cu assures that they will not implement any fare hike as operations resume. However, they will appeal to the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) for a five-peso fare increase by next month.

“The disinfection kits and disinfection measures are an added cost for them, to the drivers, so we made a proposal to the LTFRB to raise the per trip cost by a fixed amount to help cover these items,” he said.

Meanwhile, TNVS drivers are not required to undergo COVID-19 testing before resumption of operations unless they are experiencing COVID-19 like symptoms. Grab PH has test kits prepared for their partner drivers. AAC (with reports from Joan Nano)

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