Motorcycle ride-hailing firm Angkas on Wednesday thanked the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) for recommending the resumption of the pilot study on motorcycle taxis to the House of Representatives.
In an interview with DZMM, George Royeca, chief transport advocate of Angkas, expressed hope that the House of Representatives (HoR) Committee on Transportation will approve the IATF’s recommendation.
“Kami ay taos pusong nagpapasalamat sa pamahalaan (We are really grateful to the government). Hopefully, Congress will decide to extend the pilot,” Royeca said.
“We hope that the committee will adopt the recommendation of the IATF to extend the pilot taxi program. We hope that we can serve the Filpino people soon,” he added.
Royeca said Angkas has already been preparing its safety protocols for its drivers and passengers in case the HoR greenlights the resumption of the pilot testing of motorcycle taxis.
Among these protocols include cashless transactions, digital contact tracing through its app, and the use of a plastic barrier between the driver and passenger.
Under the new normal, Royeca said passengers will be required to bring their own helmet, as Angkas will ban helmet sharing.
“Number one po talaga ngayon ay safety (Our number one concern right now is safety) so we want be able to minimize points of transmission,” he said.
Royeca said the main issue about helmet sharing is the visor which serves as the face shield for passengers.
“Ito po ay kailangang well-disinfected. Mahirap po natin i monitor ‘yan kung hahayaan natin madisinfect every ride. (The visor should be well disinfected. It will be hard for us to monitor if we will allow it to be disinfected every ride),” he said.
Meanwhile, Royeca said Angkas is also working arrangements with the government to have their drivers tested for COVID-19 under the expanded testing community program and the non-medical frontline category.
The IATF on Tuesday released resolution No. 77 which included the recommendation to resume the pilot study on motorcycle taxis while waiting for the enactment of a law allowing it as another mode of public transpiration.
The pilot implementation, which Angkas and two other ride-hailing firms participated in, expired last April.