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No ‘misery’ with Anti-Distracted Driving Act

12:03 AM April 25, 2017

We would like to clarify some concerns aired by Henrico Laceda in his April 17 letter to the editor (“One more law to make people miserable”) on how the new Anti-Distracted Driving Act affects motorists who use mobile applications like Waze while driving.

While we thank and understand Laceda’s concerns regarding the implementation of Republic Act No. 10913, we assure him and
everyone that no motorist can be “exploited by unscrupulous traffic enforcers” simply for using Waze and other apps while driving—because the new law does not necessarily ban these practices.

According to Section 5-A of RA 10913, the use of mobile phones and other similar devices is not considered “distracted driving” provided that:

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1) the activity is done “without having to hold the mobile communications device” and 2) the placement of the mobile communications device or the hands-free device “does not interfere with the line of sight of the driver.”

Simply put, any motorist can still make a call, use Waze or any other mobile application as long as they are using it hands-free, and the device is not placed in the line of sight of the driver. The new law is pretty much clear in that regard, and is hardly susceptible to “so many weird interpretations by law enforcers.”

We wish to remind the public that the Senate, as part of Congress, is doing everything in its power to enact laws that will improve and uplift the lives of the Filipino people. Far from making Filipinos “miserable,” the Senate takes pride in its legacy as an institution that has time and time again addressed the concerns of our people, and helped promote shared progress and genuine democracy.

SAMMY SANTOS, print media director, Senate of the Philippines

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TAGS: Anti-Distracted Driving Act, law
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