Text and photos by Iñigo S. Roces
The Inter-Agency Council on Traffic (IACT) intends to proac tively combat the expected heavy Christmas season traffic with its latest special group, Task Force Alamid.
The special traffic force is composed of traffic enforcers from the Metro Manila and Development Authority (MMDA), Philippine National Police (PNP) Highway Patrol Group, members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), city police, and several volunteers from the group Ligtas Patrol. The special group is named after the civet cat, known to be agile and also active at night.
Task Force Alamid was formed upon an order from Malacañang to come up with a group that will work on solving traffic and road problems in the metropolis. The group will tackle a variety of problems from managing traffic flow, apprehending illegally parked vehicles, road clearing and implementing laws on drunk and distracted driving. Their mandate is to operate around the clock on identified traffic chokepoints in Metro Manila and neighboring cities.
They will focus on transport hubs such as airports, seaports and bus terminals in the metropolis to ease the entry and egress of people into and out of the city. Task Force Alamid personnel will also assist in keepint special lanes like the Christmas and Airport lanes flowing. The group will operate throughout the Christmas season, until Dec. 31, when traffic in Metro Manila is expected to be at its peak.
“They are tasked to oversee traffic management and intensified clearing operations until December when the traffic situation is expected to be at its most challenging,” said I-ACT chief Thomas Orbos.
Members of Task Force Alamid have been deputized to issue citation tickets based on the violations and penalties under JAO (Joint Administrative Order) within the vicinity of terminals and airports.