Rising highway accidents force N. Cotabato town lawmakers to pass speed limit ordinance

MAKILALA, North Cotabato, Sept. 29 (PNA) — Fed up by repeated highway mishaps along portions of the Cotabato-Davao highway, local lawmakers here have activated a speed limit ordinance, appropriating funds thereof and praying it will save lives of commuters, officials said Tuesday.

The town council on Tuesday approved additional funds to enforce the local law. The funds will cover purchase of speed guns and hiring of additional traffic enforcers to effectively implement the ordinance, save lives and properties.

According to Makilala Vice Mayor Ricky Cua, presiding officer of the town council, said the series of highway mishap from January to date in Makilala highway has risen to an alarming level.

This prompted SB members to pass Ordinance 294.

Among the victim of highway accidents was a grand daughter of a town councilor. The child died after she was hit by a speeding Toyota D4D passenger van.

On Monday, a 12-year-old girl also died after a highway accident in Barangay Malasila.

The moment motorists enter the political boundaries of Makilala, they have to limit the speed to 60 kilometers per hour or face penalties. Within the Poblacion proper, motorists are limited to only 40 km/hour while a speed of 20 km/hour is required to all vehicles the moment they pass school zones.

At least 100 highway accidents have been recorded by Makilala Traffic Unit from January to September 28 with seven deaths. This is 40 percent higher from the number of accidents in 2014.

In nearby Kidapawan City, the city council is studying the full implementation of a local ordinance limiting speed limit within the city proper. But councilors are pushing for amendments and higher penalties to violators.

Polomolok and Tupi town governments in South Cotabato have succeeded in reducing the number of highway accidents by implementing speed limit ordinance.

In Tupi alone, the highway mishaps a month have been reduced by almost 80 percent. Before the ordinance, Tupi traffic unit recorded 97 average accidents monthly but after the law was applied, an average of 15 incidents were reported.

Davao City was the first local government to strictly implemented speed limit and save many lives and limbs. (PNA)