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Gov to yard operators: Widen yard entrance, exit points to avoid gridlock
By: Vanessa Almeda | Published Wednesday, January 13, 2021
Trailer trucks maneuvering to enter and exit their respective yards have been seen as another cause of the traffic congestion in northern Cebu, particularly along Cansaga road connecting Mandaue City, Liloan and Consolacion towns. (FILE PHOTO)

Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia asked trailer truck yard operators to heed the National Building Code on the required width for their establishments’ entrance and exit points.

This is among the solutions seen to address the nagging traffic in northern Cebu, particularly along Cansaga road which connects Mandaue City, Liloan and Consolacion in a meeting on Tuesday, January 12 with members of the Cebu Truckers Association.

In the same meeting, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) showed a video clip of a trailer truck which caused traffic as it maneuvered upon exit from the yard. 

It took several minutes for a single trailer truck to maneuver on the right lane, causing an automatic gridlock in the two lanes on a portion of the Cansaga road.

The DPWH official said the video shows one of the common causes of traffic congestion especially in areas where truck yards are found. 

“If you observe, wala pa’y disruption sa traffic but once mugawas na ning mga dagko nga truck maka-observe gyud ta nga mao jud siya’y maka cause og disruption,” the DPWH representative said.

“Tibuok jud roadway ang iyang makuha tungod lang sa pag-maneuver niya nga mugawas siya paingon sa Mandaue,” he added.

In the meeting, Garcia referred to the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of the National Building Code which requires that for a 20-meter road, at least 13.4 meters is the required width for entrance and exit. 

“A narrower entrance results in congestion on the road because of your units because it’s more difficult for the driver to maneuver, whether they are going in or going out. Mao bitaw nang naa’y IRR sa PD 1096 and gi-define na in accordance with the road,” the governor said.

“So can we get this commitment nga ang entrance na lang 13.4. At any rate, the 2 LGUs will be passing an ordinance. I’ll issue an executive order and this will be supported with ordinances in accordance with the law,” she further added. 

Garcia, who heads the Cebu Provincial Traffic Management Board, has been on top of the situation in addressing the lingering traffic woes in the metropolis and started the no-left-turn policy scheme in northern Cebu particularly in Consolacion.

Other solutions that were in effect were the additional hours extended for the truck ban in the north and recently, the implementation of a new schedule for the releasing and pulling out of cargoes from the Cebu International Port (CIP) starting Friday, January 15.

In the governor's second executive order for the year, trucks will have to pull-out cargoes from 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. the next day starting Friday, January 15. This will be in effect from Mondays to Sundays. 

Garcia said there is a need to compartmentalize the solutions to address traffic, citing three segments in the movement of these trucks: first, retrieval of cargoes from CIP from the yard going to the port; second, delivery of cargoes (to clients); and third, returning the empty containers back to CIP.

During last week’s meeting, it was observed that one of the causes of traffic congestion is the presence of huge trailer trucks plying the streets during day time. 

Figures provided by Oriental Port and Allied Services Corporation (OPASCOR) for the period October to December 2020 showed that the number of containers released from the CIP average at at least 1,000 between 1 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Meanwhile, Cebu Truckers Association Vice President Simeon Beltrano admitted that there were lapses in the maneuvering of the truck and promised to address these. 

“It is well noted and we will educate our drivers to also make sure that our entry and exit does not hamper traffic in this area,” he said. 

Garcia urged truck and trailer owners to instead provide a “turning radius for the units by a simple rearrangement of the containers and other vehicles inside the yard.”

Attendees of the meeting agreed to heed the governor’s call.

The governor will also be calling a separate meeting with local and international shippers together with yard operators to discuss the return of empty containers to CIP. 

In a related development, the Visayan Electric Company (VECO) expressed its full cooperation to the government’s efforts to clear the roads of disruption including electrical posts that obstruct paved roads.

DPWH Cebu 5th Engineering District reported 42 posts that still need to be uprooted. (Vanessa L. Almeda)