The mandatory use of bike helmets which the Quezon City government started implementing on Thursday drew mixed reactions from its residents.
While some residents approve of the ordinance, others oppose its implementation.
“Sana po bago niyo kami hulihin alamin niyo po muna kung ilang days lang kami sa trabaho at kung ba’t wala kaming helmet na suot. Nagtitiis kame para makatipid para may pangpagatas kame sa mga anak namin na kagaya kong may anak na at yung bike na ginagamit ko hiniram ko lang yung perang pangbili at hinuhulugan ko kada sahod (Before you start arresting us, please try to know how many days we go to work and why we are not wearing a helmet. We are sacrificing so we could buy milk for our children like me and that I only borrowed the money to buy this bike I use),” said netizen Mark Joseph Tusi Funa in his post.
Many residents say this is not the right time to implement such an ordinance and that many resorted to the use of bicycles as their means of transportation amid the pandemic not only because of the limited public utility vehicles but also because many lost their job and have recently resumed work.
This is the sad truth, netizen Angel Collado lamented.
“May bagong ordinansa. Kung kelan hirap na hirap ang lahat ng mamamayan magsimula ulit, para sana sa ikakabuti at safety ng lahat ng nagbibike. Pero di naman lahat may kakayahan na bumili o manghiram sa panahon ng pandemya. Sana di na muna ipatupad (There is a new ordinance when many are in a difficult situation and others are just restarting. Yes, this is for the safety of bikers but not everyone has the means to buy during this pandemic),” he said.
The city government said the mandatory wearing of a bike helmet took place on Thursday.
“Don’t forget to wear your helmet. The imposing of fines on all bikers not wearing helmets in Quezon City starts, in compliance with Ordinance No. SP-2942 that aims to assure the safety of every biker in the city,” the QC government said in its post written in a mix of English and Filipino.
Mayor Joy Belmonte earlier said now bicycle use has become part of the new normal, she wants this activity to be safe in the city with bikers using a helmet.
“I hope we understand that this is for the safety of bikers that is why they made it mandatory. Yes this needs extra budget but we do not know what harm awaits us in the roads”, said Krishna Hyde in a post in Filipino.
The city government recently distributed free helmets to bikers to help those who do not have money for one.
Ordinance No. SP-2942 sets penalties to those not wearing helmets while passing through the streets of Quezon City by imposing fines of PHP1,000, PHP3,000, and PHP5,000 for the first, second, and third offense, respectively. (PNA)