By | June 6, 2020
Motorcycle with windshield for backrider.

To address the clamor of his constituents to allow back-riding, Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor Jr. has come up with a design in motorcycles that features windshield and handlebar for backriders.

On Friday, Gov. Defensor Jr. personally designed a safety innovation for motorcycles that will allow backriders while adhering to the social distancing policy.

The design features a transparent protective shield behind the driver that is fixed on a handlebar provided for the backrider so he or she can be seated safely and have a secure ride.

He submitted his design to the Land Transportation Office (LTO), along with his proposal on the use of motorcycles and tricycles during the period of modified general community quarantine (MGCQ).

In his letter to LTO Assistant Secretary Edgar Galvante, Defensor proposes the following use motorcycles:
a.) One (1) back rider shall be allowed;
b.) Provided that, between the driver and the back rider, there shall be a divider/windshield made of non-porous and transparent material;
c.) Provided that, there shall be no physical contact between the driver and the back rider during the ride;
d.) Provided further that, there shall be a handlebar for the back rider for a secure ride, and
e.) Provided finally that, the back rider and driver shall wear crash helmets, face masks and gloves and perform disinfecting procedures immediately before and after the trip.

Gov. Art Defensor Jr trying out the motorcycle with safety innovation for physical distancing.

Gov. Art Defensor Jr trying out the motorcycle with safety innovation for physical distancing.

For tricycles:
a.) Three (3) passengers shall be allowed;
b.) There shall be one (1) passenger at the front seat, one (1) at the back seat and one (1) back rider;
c.) provided that there shall be a divider between the front seat and back seat, made of non-porous and transparent material.

Meanwhile, Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año reiterated that back-riding in motorcycles remains prohibited, saying the issue is a health and safety concern and not convenience.

In a televised meeting with President Rodrigo Duterte and Cabinet officials on Friday, Año said this is in compliance with minimum health standards under the general community quarantine.

“We understand how difficult it is but based on the guidelines of the DOH, the minimum health standard that requires physical distancing is very hard to practice in motorcycles even if we say that they are a couple or they are siblings. The virus doesn’t spare anyone,” Año said.

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