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MMDA further tweaks bus lane rules

The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority continued to tweak its rules for the bus lanes along Epifanio delos Santos Avenue (EDSA), trying to keep buses from causing accidents without reducing traffic to a crawl.
But MMDA Chairman Francis Tolentino stressed the bus lane rules will not be scrapped and will still be strictly enforced along EDSA.
"It is high time that we take drastic action to prevent further loss of lives and damage to properties. Every motorist should be part of the solution to help promote civility and responsibility on the road," he said in an article posted on the MMDA website Friday.
Following a consultative meeting with stakeholders, the MMDA made further adjustments to its bus lane policy.
At the meet, provincial bus operators asked Tolentino to allow them to use the flyovers and underpasses beyond the window hours earlier provided.
While some rules on buses using flyovers were relaxed, the MMDA remained firm on not allowing buses to use the tunnels.
The MMDA clamped down on buses after a series of accidents along EDSA earlier this month.
Eight people were hurt after a bus crashed at the EDSA-Ortigas flyover, with the driver found to be texting while speeding. Days later, two people were killed after a bus figured in a three-vehicle smashup at a tunnel along EDSA.
Memorandum Circular 8
The meeting resulted in Memorandum Circular 8, which provides for the strict implementation of bus (yellow) lanes, loading and unloading bay stations, and third lanes for provincial buses on EDSA.
"We will only allow city buses to use the designated bus lanes clearly marked with yellow lines that serve as a divider between the bus lane and those intended for private vehicles. All provincial and city buses are not allowed to use any underpass or tunnel along EDSA, but they will be allowed to use the Magallanes Flyover," Tolentino said. 
Also, the memorandum circular requires all provincial buses to occupy the third lane of EDSA. It allows them to use flyovers, but not the tunnels along EDSA. 
Northbound city buses shall also be allowed to use the Ortigas flyover in going to their destination. 
On the other hand, private vehicles caught using the yellow lanes will be fined P500 while buses that stray outside of the yellow lane will be fined P200.
Tolentino also said the MMDA will enhance the Organized Bus Route stations in Fairview, Alabang, Monumento and Baclaran and improve the dispatching system of buses plying EDSA. — RSJ, GMA News
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