If you have recently renewed your vehicles’ registration with the Land Transportation Office (LTO), you’ll know how long the lines are at LTO offices across the country. Even before the offices open, those planning to have their vehicle registrations renewed are already. Even then, it can still take hours before their numbers are called to be scheduled appointments for emissions testing, which might be days or weeks away.

To help the public with this issue, one congressman wants to temporarily suspend the emissions testing requirement for registering motor vehicles. Rep. Rufus Rodriguez of Cagayan de Oro City is urging both the Department of Transportation (DoTr) and the LTO to suspend the requirement for emissions testing until the end of the year. He even filed Resolution No. 1007, which “calls on the House of Representatives to express its collective sense for the suspension of the requirement”.

Due to the quarantine restrictions, it is only now that vehicle owners can have their vehicles registered. As a result, it is causing long lines and even unusual delays, especially at emissions testing centers. Rodriguez cites that even in Cagayan de Oro City, registration applicants “have to line up very early in the morning to get a number, which takes four to five hours, then they wait until their numbers are called to be given an appointment for their emission test, which is at least two weeks away.”

Congressman wants to suspend LTO emission testing requirement image

“It’s a lot of inconvenience on the part of motor vehicle owners, to say the least. These taxpayers deserve better service,” Rodriguez said.

Aside from the hassle, Rodriguez says that long queues and delays can lead to violation of social distancing protocols among registrants and even LTO personnel. This could then possibly cause more cases of COVID-19 spreading as some LTO offices. He even adds that some LTO offices have already had to undergo lockdown as employees were infected by COVID-19.

“To address this problem and to make registration easier for vehicle owners, the DoTr and the LTO should suspend the emission testing requirement until Dec. 31, 2020,” he adds.

On top of making life easier for vehicle owners, the congressman adds the suspension of emissions testing will allow the agency to look into complaints and allegations against privately-owned testing centers across the country.

Given the crisis the country is currently facing, suspending emissions testing will surely help vehicle owners in registration. That way, they no longer have to line up early in the morning and waste an entire day just to schedule emissions testing.