By Minerva Newman
DUMAGUETE CITY – Silliman University (SU), through its Technology Business Incubator (TBI) staff, produced, distributed and installed for free 100 plastic shields for motorized tricycles in Dumaguete City as a protective measure for drivers and passengers.
SU TBI Manager Janice Antoinette Forster said that they initiated the project after learning that some pedicab drivers in other cities were being getting the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
Dumaguete City is known for its tricycles, or pedicabs, as the preferred mode of public transportation, and was even described as the “motorcycle capital of the Philippines” due to the presence of great number of motorcycles and motorized tricycles.
“We thought of giving the drivers the shields for their protection so that the passengers will also feel protected when they ride a tricycle,” Forster added.
Forster said when SU TBI contacted the Federation of Dumaguete MotorCab Operators & Drivers Association, they were informed that there were about 2,300 registered pedicabs in the city. However, because of budgetary limitations for this project, Forster bared that they can only make 100 pedi-shields for now.
“We wish we could give more to the pedicab drivers if only we have more resources. If there are private institutions who would like to donate, we could do something to provide the same kind of service,” Forster noted.
Forster said SU TBI made the design for the pedi-shield which is installed between the motorcycle or driver’s seat and the shell of the pedicab or the passenger seat. It includes a transaction hole and a sign on physical distancing.