Will Bohol motorists now be arrested for texting while driving?

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Will Bohol motorists now be arrested for texting while driving?

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The act has long been frowned upon, but drivers in Tagbilaran City and the rest of the province can still use their cellphones while driving without getting flagged down and fined by authorities.

According to the Land Transportation Office (LTO) in Tagbilaran City, the new law, Republic Act (RA) 10913 or the Anti-Distracted Driving Act, has not yet been fully enforced.

Yesterday, the law’s implementation was also suspended throughout the country pending the review of the legislation’s guidelines amid flak and confusion on its rules.

LTO Tagbilaran registrar Erwin Patalinghug said that the agency’s local personnel are set to carry out an information campaign on the new measure to better explain its guidelines to the affected public.

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Patalinghug also admitted he has also yet to go over the implementing rules and regulations of the law.

He also noted that amid lack of knowledge on the new measure, authorities will not be conducting arrests yet, particularly as penalty fees are steeper than usual road violation fines.

As stipulated in the RA, first-time offenders will be fined P5,000; second, P10,000; and third, P15,000 with three-month license suspension.

For those who violate the law beyond three times, their licenses will be revoked and they will be fined P20,000.

Meanwhile, Patalinghug also admitted that the LTO currently does not have enough personnel to enforce the new law.

The legislation was enacted on February 3, 2017.

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Based on the RA, the use of electronic communication equipment, such as cellphones, wireless telephone, two-way radio, pager and other similar devices is prohibited for mobiling drivers. (Allen Doydora)

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