Everyone is frustrated on the road, and you can tell by the reactions on social media.
Many do treat social media as a complaint board, but it's not really a good practice because unless an incident is so outrageous that it goes viral, the authorities won't act upon it. There is a process, albeit outdated: a hotline number or an email address. The problem is that the days of hotlines are long gone; no one really bothers to call a hotline number to complain or file a report. Apps are the new normal.
And that brings us to the new thing of the Land Transportation Office. No, it's not about PMVIC or a new implementing rule of the child seat law. Instead, it's the new "Central Command Center" (C3) reporting system that's currently on 'pilot testing'.
Reporting can be done via an app called CitiSend, or the trusty hotline 1-342-586, which links to the mobile incident reporting and management system that is being fielded by the LTO. It lets users -motorists or commuters or the general public- file reports regarding incidents or violations they spot on the road.
The Android version of the app can be found on the Google Play Store, and the registration process is quite straightforward and complete with the SOP of an OTP sent via SMS. Once registered, the app takes you to a dashboard with quick access buttons that can allow you to report common incidents.
As the app and system are still in their testing phase, you can only report the following:
Lost or stolen vehicles
Stolen motor vehicle license plates
Sale or disposition of previously registered/stolen vehicles
Once final, you will be able to report the following:
Car Registration Query
Damaged License Plate
Hit and Run
MV operating on the road using fake License Plate
MV operating on the road using tampered License Plate
MV operating on the road without License Plate
Number Coding Violations
Use of Fake License Plate in a Crime
Use of Stolen License Plate
Some of the incidents are interesting, though the list reads more like a violation checklist on a ticket. There seems to be a lot of plate-related concerns where citizens can report things like if they saw their plates on another car or tampered plates (e.g. repainted). There are incidents regarding crimes like tandem riding (presumably armed) which would be rather dangerous.
There are also options to report a medical emergency, a vehicle fire, or even use an emergency tracker feature. There are even options to report coding and reckless driving violations too.
What we like is that citizens can also upload a photo of the incident or even email it from the app. Don't forget to get the plate number of the vehicle you're reporting about, and indicate the location of the incident.
The system's broad scope will also involve coordinating with other agencies and offices regarding the incident. Presumably, that means a variety of MOUs with offices like the PNP-HPG, the MMDA, the many LGU traffic management divisions, so on and so forth.
Getting that coordination in place will likely prove to be major challenge, though there seems to be some real initiative behind the app. The concern, however, would be the potential for misuse or abuse of the app by authorities and by motorists.
Once fully operational, CitiSend could have the potential to declutter social media of complaints. After all, it's not Zuckerberg's job to file and act upon motorist complaints on the road.