Mayor imposes stricter policies on city hall vehicles

Mayor Alfredo “Albee” Benitez gives his message during the 86th Charter Day Celebration of Bacolod City at the Bacolod City Government Center (BCGC) Tuesday. (Photo courtesy of Bacolod PIO)

By Glazyl Y. Masculino

BACOLOD CITY – Mayor Alfredo “Albee” Benitez imposed stricter rules on the use of city government-owned vehicles following a bus tragedy that killed a teacher and wounded 37 others in Don Salvador Benedicto, Negros Occidental, last Friday.

Benitez, in his message during the 86th Charter Day Anniversary of the city yesterday, said he issued two memorandum orders related to the accident involving the city-owned bus.

The mayor said that the memorandum ensures no city-owned vehicles will be allowed to be used by others who might put themselves in danger and to ensure proper safety.

“I’m holding in abeyance or suspending all borrowing of city vehicles. It is to ensure safety, that these vehicles will not put them in danger although I’m still waiting for the investigation on the accident that happened in Don Salvador Benedicto (town),” he said.

On June 14, a city government bus carrying 39 passengers, including 32 teachers, fell on its side due to mechanical trouble while traveling downhill and approaching a curve in Barangay Igmaya-an.

Benitez said that based on the initial information he received, brake fade was the initial cause of the accident. He is awaiting the official investigation results.

The mayor also instructed the General Services Office (GSO) to check the maintenance and running condition of the vehicles to ensure they have no problems.

“This is to ensure that vehicles here are properly maintained,” he said, adding that they want to prevent such unfortunate events from happening again.

The teachers from Paglaum Village Elementary School were returning from a team-building event in San Carlos City when the accident happened, killing 42-year-old Arlyn Verde of Murcia town. Only the 59-year-old bus driver was unharmed.