In the Philippines, the jeepney has one of the most affordable and reliable means of public transportation. However, it, like any other vehicle, runs on petrol, which highly affects the environment, causing pollution and climate change.
To deal with this, through the Department of Transportation, the Duterte administration created a program for the modernization of jeepneys.
The program is under the Public Utility Vehicle Modernization Program. The goal of this program is to provide the citizens a safe, efficient yet environment-friendly public transportation service.
But the modernization of jeepneys in the Philippines has sparked controversy. Here are things you should know about the program.
Modernization of jeepney in the Philippines
So what exactly is the program about? The aim of the jeepney modernization act is to implement positive changes in the current land transport system of the country. With the roll-out of the program, the Philippines will have jeepneys that are modern and environment-friendly.
This also means that vehicles that are 15 years old or older can’t registered or operated.
According to the jeepney modernization program guidelines, all jeepney engines need to be at least Euro-4 compliant engine or LPG-powered, electric and hybrid. The proposal also states that each jeepney should come with modern features like GPS, a CCTV camera, and an automated system for collecting fares.
Like any program, the program for the modernization of jeepneys have advantages as well as disadvantages. There are other vehicles are also listed in the modernization program. For more detail, check out our article on All About PUV Modernization Program Guidelines.
Jeepney modernization advantages
The objectives of the program is its primary advantages: offering commuters comfortable, safe, and eco-friendly transportation.
Modernization of jeepneys for pollution prevention
We all know that the vehicles that we drive or take daily produce toxic fumes. This is why many car manufacturers are striving to improve their products and reduce harmful emissions. However, for a long time, jeepneys haven’t been modernized.
They contribute greatly to pollution. As a result, using greener “models” can help improve the overall air quality of the country.
Safety is one of the things that the jeepney modernization program can offer. Newer models will have GPS can CCTV cameras installed. The order also demands drivers to be more disciplined.
One of the problems of the Philippines is its heavy traffic. With this program, the routes of the jeepneys will also change, for faster and more punctual commuting time.
Unpredictable weather, traffic jams, and cramped spaces make commuting on a jeepney a disaster. Modern jeepneys will have bigger space. Unit doors will locate on the curbside for a more comfortable and convenient ride.
Jeepney modernization disadvantages
Some sectors, operators, and drivers have called the jeepney modernization bill anti-poor. There is one fact that is undeniable is that modern units have high prices. Even when the Land Bank of the Philippines will offer loans while the government has committed to provide assistance, many operators and drivers can’t pay for a new jeepney.
As a result, many operators might have to shut down. And if this happens, jeepney operations may be taken over by private companies. Commuters will have to pay for higher fare prices. At the moment, a jeepney modernization debate and a pilot-testing are being carried out to assess the feasibility of the program.
Jeepney modernization pros and cons
Modernization of jeepneys pros
- Reduce pollution
- Enhance comfort
- Improve public safety
- Better punctuality
Modernization of jeepneys cons
- Modern jeepneys are expensive
- Operators may have to shut down their businesses
- Private companies may take over operations
- Increased fare prices
Modernization of jeepneys: price
The cost to own a modern jeepney is around P2 million per vehicle. According to stakeholders, they are figuring out how to reduce this amount.
Isuzu Philippines rolled out the first Euro 4 Jeepney was rolled out in 2018. After that, fifteen prototype units were submitted to the Senate. They have been tested in Baguio City.
Recently, Hino Motors Philippines introduced its modernized jeepney. There are four prototypes in total. All of them can accommodate 23 to 30 passengers. Air-conditioners are optional.
Foton Philippines also rolled out its version that can carry 24 passengers, eight will stand and 16 will sit.
All models from these different manufacturer have energy-saving motors, GPS, CCTV, and entertainment systems.
The goal of the modernization of jeepneys is undoubtedly great as it can solve problems like air pollution, road accidents, and passenger discomfort. We at Techiestuffph.com hope that the government and other stakeholders can find a sustainable solution that fits all.