‘Provide protected bike lanes,’ DOH urges LGUs, after nurse’s fatal mishap

The Department of Health (DOH) has urged the different local government units (LGUs) to have “protected bicycle lanes” in their respective areas after a nurse recently died due to a hit-and-run incident in Manila.

(Jansen Romero / MANILA BULLETIN)

“We reiterate the call for local government units to roll out protected bicycle lanes as soon as possible,” the DOH said in a statement.

“Given the current limitations on public transport, cycling and other forms of active transport remain some of the most effective ways to travel while observing physical distancing and maintaining ventilation — both key in mitigating the spread of COVID-19,” it added.

The Health department issued the call after 23-year-old Renz Perez died after being hit by a pick up truck while riding his bicycle along Padre Burgos Avenue in Ermita, Manila last August 23. Perez worked as a nurse at the Justice Jose Abad Santos General Hospital.

“Mr. Perez’s untimely death only serves to amplify the call to protect our frontliners, most especially our healthcare workers, during the COVID-19 pandemic,” the DOH said.

The DOH said that LGUs should ensure that “traffic and law enforcement proactively ensure the safety of all road users---especially those using light mobility.”

The agency said that they have already coordinated with civil society stakeholders with regards to the proper and promotion of active transport during and after the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We remind all road users, most especially motorists, to be respectful and to share the road with other road users, particularly cyclists and pedestrians who are most vulnerable to accidents,” the DOH said.

“They have just as much right to sue the road as motorists do. We must all do our part to create roads and communities that are safe and accessible to all,” it added.