A motorcycle, by design, is agile and can filter its way around traffic, allowing its rider and passenger to get from point A to point B faster than four-wheeled vehicles. It is also because of this advantage that motorcycles are the choice for delivery services, enabling them to deliver food fresh from the oven, medicine just in time for someone who is sick, and important documents.
Unfortunately, Pangasinan 5th District representative, Ramon Guico, Jr., thinks that this lane filtering/splitting of motorcycles should be prohibited and has filed a bill with a fine that can go as high as PHP 5,000, including revocation of driver’s license.
House Bill (HB) 1419 or the Anti-Lane Splitting Law, prohibits any motorcycle from filtering/lane splitting at all times. Lane filtering/splitting is defined by the Land Transportation Office (LTO) as “using or sharing a lane already occupied by one vehicle by another vehicle such as a motorcycle or scooter on a road or highway.”
If HB 1419 becomes a law, the penalty will be PHP 1,500 for the first offense, PHP 3,000 for the second offense, and PHP 5,000 for the third and final offense, which also comes with revocation of the violator’s driver’s license.
Is lane splitting illegal in the Philippines?
Technically, lane splitting is already illegal here in the Philippines. The LTO, back in 2008, published Administrative Order (AO) No. AHS-2008-013 with the subject “Rules and Regulations for the Use and Operation of Motorcycles on Highways”. Under Section IX C Miscellaneous Traffic Rules of the said AO, “A driver/rider shall observe the rule and stay on one lane per one vehicle only. Lane splitting is prohibited along a road or a highway. Motorcycles or scooters shall not [be] operated on sidewalks.”
However, since our roads are small and can hardly accommodate the volume of traffic, the authorities are not implementing this rule. Also, if there’s only one motorcycle occupying a lane like a car in slow-moving traffic, multiply that by the millions of motorcycle riders that ply our roads, wouldn’t that be a waste of road space and make the traffic situation worse?
You can read the full text of HB 1419 here.