DAGUPAN CITY – The city through the Public Order and Safety Office (POSO) is set to launch a 24/7 help desk starting October 2 to address the plight and concerns of passengers/commuters against erring tricycle drivers plying the city streets  on daytime and nighttime.


This was the recommendation of officers and members of different tricycle drivers and operators group in the city like the Federation of Accredited Tricycle Association in Dagupan City (FATODAG) and the City Federation of Tricycle Drivers and Operators (CITYFED) in their meeting with Mayor Belen T. Fernandez and POSO Chief Carlito Ocampo on September 5 at the city hall.


Fernandez who just arrived from the United States warmly welcomed the positive feedback and reactions of the legitimate tricycle drivers and operators in the city following the implementation of POSO’s Oplan Colorum.


“We are thankful that our meeting with our tricycle drivers and operators earn positive results that we even came out with several agreements with them, which are all for the safety and welfare of our tricycle commuters especially our children. After all, our concern in implementing the Oplan Colorum is to protect the welfare of our children,” said Fernandez.


In connection with this, the POSO will keep a list of cell phone numbers of all tricycle operators in the city for immediate identification and action.


Furthermore, legitimate tricycle drivers will also be asked to secure a medical certificate to ensure their health and the health of their passengers.


“This is on top of our understanding with them that the city will also conduct an especial medical mission for them and their members once a year. And once our diagnostic and lying-in center operates, they can avail of free x-ray, ECG and ultrasound,” said Fernandez.


Starting October 2, all legitimate tricycle drivers are also expected to observe their dress code for easier identification.


On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, they will be wearing blue uniform, on Tuesdays and Thursdays they will be wearing green uniform and a casual uniform on Saturdays and Sundays. They too should not wear slippers when driving.


“Soon our legitimate tricycle drivers will be our very own tourist guides and they will transport our local and foreign tourists to our tourist spots like the Tondaligan Beach, which we are now developing as one of the best tourist destinations in the North,” added Fernandez.


On the plight of colorum tricycles, the groups also considered giving them the opportunity to transport passengers, but only within their respective barangays.


“This after the POSO is done in its survey of getting the total number of colorum tricycles in the city. Once they are done with this, there might be a possibility that we allow them to transport passengers within their respective barangays,” said Fernandez.


On the other hand, the tricycle groups thanked Mayor Fernandez for instituting reforms and programs to advance their rights and welfare against colorum units, especially in securing and renewing their tricycle franchise.


The groups disclosed that unlike before when every time they incurred delay in renewing their franchise, they were asked to pay an undetermined amount just to be allowed to renew their franchise.


Fernandez made a difference when she was still the vice-mayor by instituting reforms in the renewal of franchises, the groups said.


At present, the number of tricycle franchise holders in the city remains at 2,500 in accordance with a standing city ordinance. (Joseph C. Bacani/CIO/Sept. 5, 2017)