MANILA — A bill allowing local government units (LGUs) to suspend the wearing of motorcycle helmets as mandated by R.A. No. 10054 or the “Motorcycle Helmet Act of 2009” is under consideration by the House Committee on Transportation.
Zamboanga City Rep. Celso L. Lobregat, author of HB 4438, noted that incidents of crimes committed by motorcycle riders are increasing and reaching an alarming level.
“In 2013, according to records from the Philippine National Police, more than 3,000 crimes committed by motorcycle riders were reported in Metro Manila alone,” Lobregat said.
The lawmaker pointed out that under RA 10054, only tricycle drivers are exempted from complying with the mandatory wearing of motorcycle helmets.
“This measure aims to provide the circumstances wherein the implementation of RA 10054 can be temporarily suspended by LGUs in their respective areas of jurisdiction,” the lawmaker said.
Under the bill, LGUs with high incidence of crimes committed by motorcycle riders may, upon recommendation by the local peace and order council, and a duly enacted ordinance temporarily suspend the implementation of the provisions of the Act for a period of one year which may be extended for another year upon determination of the necessity for the extension by the local peace and order council.
Law enforcers are having difficulty solving crimes perpetrated by motorcycle riders since the perpetrators are wearing helmets which cover their faces, the author noted.
“While this amendatory bill recognizes the importance of protective gears like helmets to safeguard motorcycle riders from injury during road accidents, the proposed measure also considers the security and well-being of the public since criminal elements are now taking advantage of the mobility provided them by motorcycles and the convenience and ease at which they can conceal their identities by wearing helmets while committing crimes,” Lobregat explained.