Road accidents can happen to anyone at any time especially if you are being careless and less attentive. In 2020, according to the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA), there were around 65,032 recorded road accidents in the country. This was relatively low compared to 2019’s 121,771 cases since lockdown restrictions affected the volume of drivers last year. Nonetheless, with or without a pandemic, drivers must still be cautious enough to avoid accidents from happening.
Cars and motorcycles and their passengers were the most involved in road mishaps in previous years. EDSA, C5 and Commonwealth Avenue were the top three accident-prone areas in Metro Manila with 17,382, 8,735 and 4,998 recorded incidents of road mishaps in 2019 respectively.
Here are some common causes of road crashes that a responsible driver should be aware of to avoid being another casualty:
Drinking and driving. Alcohols are known to be downers which can make a driver sleepy or weaken the level of alertness and focus. If you plan to drink, ask someone to drive you home. Read up about the Philippines’ Anti-Drunk and Drugged Driving Act of 2013.
Focusing on your phone instead of the road. Republic Act 10913 or the Anti-Distracted Driving Act is one traffic policy PH drivers shouldn’t take for granted. This law prohibits a person from holding or using any mobile communication device or entertainment gadgets while driving.
Not parking safe and smart. Park your vehicles in designated parking spaces to avoid being towed or damaged.
Overspeeding. Drivers need to know the speed limits when driving through highways and streets to prevent penalties, apprehensions and accidents.
Below is the speed limit table as stated in Republic Act No. 4136:
Blindspots. Drivers should be aware and understand the full concept of blindspots in order to know how to avoid them. Some common situations that require your attention for blindspots are: before changing lanes, before pulling out from the curb or before backing out of a driveway.
Overtaking. A bad overtake may result in a car collision or crash especially when you don’t give the right signal to the driver in front of you before overtaking. Signal lights are not often used in the Philippines. Most of the time it’s already too late before we turn our signal lights.
Ignoring traffic laws. With all the driving laws that we have, how much of it do you remember? Statistics show that more Filipinos are committing traffic violations and getting involved in vehicular accidents. These laws were created to maintain peace and order on the road. That’s why you need to familiarize yourself and know them by heart to make the roads safer for everyone.
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Road injuries and fatalities are sudden, violent and traumatic not just for the victims but for their families as well. Careless behavior and recklessness can leave a long-lasting, or worse, permanent impact. As we observe World Day of Remembrance of Road Traffic Victims this November 21, let’s work together in preventing road crashes and join hands in promoting road safety.