A total of 154,561 free rides were given to health workers and other frontliners all over the country as of Sunday (April 12) through the free ride initiative of the Department of Transportation (DOTr) amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.
In a Facebook post on Monday, the DOTr said its free ride program for medical front-liners has given a total of 41,312 free rides in the National Capital Region (NCR) and another 113,249 free rides in the rest of the country.
“Mayroon namang kabuuang bilang na 219 vehicle units ang na-deploy sa buong Pilipinas para sa naturang libreng sakay noong ika-12 ng Abril (A total of 219 vehicles have been deployed all over the Philippines for the said program on April 12),” the DOTr said.
Through the Land Transportation Office (LTO) and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB), the program is currently available in Regions 1, 2, 3 4-A, 4-B, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, the Cordillera Administrative Region and Caraga, aside from the NCR.
In the NCR, the program currently offers 19 routes and is available at Google Maps: https://bit.ly/DOTrFrontlineShuttleMap.
“Madadagdagan pa ang mga sineserbisyuhan sa NCR na aabot na sa 20 RUTA simula ika-15 ng Abril. (There will be more beneficiaries in the NCR as the routes available will increase to 20 beginning April 15),” the DOTr said.
The program, which began on March 18, was made possible through the DOTr’s partnership with numerous government offices as well as partners in the private sector such as bus operators, fuel, and automotive companies.
In a message, the DOTr said participating buses in the program received fuel subsidies from oil companies — Phoenix Petroleum donating 50 liters of fuel daily to 60 bus units, Clean Fuel donating 40 liters a day to 20 buses, Total Philippines donating PHP1,000 each to 30 buses or PHP300 to vehicles of medical front-liners, Petron Corporation donating 50 liters daily to 60 buses, and SEAOIL Philippines donating 50 liters daily to 15 buses beginning Monday.
Aside from free bus rides, expressways in Luzon also offer toll-free access to medical front-liners through a partnership with the Toll Regulatory Board.
Meanwhile, a total of 1,866 transport concerns were addressed by the Emergency Operations Center of the DOTr through its Covid-19 transportation hotline.
The hotline, available for Smart and PLDT network subscribers at #840-55-500, is available from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. Mondays to Fridays, and 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. (PNA)