CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY (PIA)–The Department of Health (DOH)-10 revealed an increase in road injuries in northern Mindanao since the beginning of 2022 at 10, 524 in the first quarter alone.
Ma. Rachelle Escatron, senior health program officer of DOH-10, shared in Talakayan sa PIA, media forum at SM City Cagayan de Oro, the trend of road injuries have declined in 2020 and 2021 but up again in the first three months of 2022.
As of 2019 road injury cases total to 75,112, but such declined in 2020 with 40,382, and further lowered in 2021 with 13,673 and in the 2022 first quarter with 10,524.
Escatron said since the ease of restrictions and declaration of Alert Level 1 by the Inter-Agency Task Force for COVID-19 in most areas of the region, the road injury cases have gone up.
The role of DOH is to train hospitals both government and private in its online electronic injury surveillance system and post-crash response. “Our emergency medical service system should be standardized and trauma and post-trauma rehab centers at selected tertiary hospitals must be established as part of the Philippine road action plan,” she added.
As per data from the Land Transportation Office (LTO), 60% registered vehicles are motorcycles with 12,000 road deaths in a year, or 32 per day or one per hour per day in the country.
Ferdinand Flores, OIC LTO Cagayan de Oro District Office, shared that there are five pillars of road safety namely: qualified drivers, road worthy motor vehicles, traffic discipline, road safety seminars and community relations and legislative initiatives.
Flores said they have strengthened the issuance of license based on Republic Act 10930 wherein it has extended the validity of driver’s license to 10 years. Private emission testing centers and private motor vehicle testing centers are also available to abide with the Clean Air Act.
Meanwhile, they are also strengthening enforcement and are in partnership with the Road and Traffic Administration (RTA) and highway patrol groups in conducting seminars to drivers on defensive driving courses and also lobby for local government ordinances to promote smooth traffic.
Meanwhile, James Andrade, public information officer of RTA Cagayan de Oro, said traffic education is the office’s number one priority.
“We have tallied around 5-10 incidents per day. Especially sa peak hours, most traffic incidents happen at peak hours at the same time usually ang involved is ang private vehicles. Kasagara nga reason sa private vehicle drivers is nagdali na or wala ko kabantay,” he said.
(We have tallied around 5-10 incidents per day. Especially at peak hours, most traffic incidents happen at peak hours at the same time usually involved private vehicles. Their usual reason is either they are in a hurry or they did not notice)
Causes of road accidents include impaired driving (i.e. influenced by alcohol), not using signal light, over speeding, overtaking and mechanical defects. (JMOR/PIA-10)