The Department of Transportation (DOTr), together with the Land Transportation Office (LTO) and other various government agencies, continue to push for safer roads for everyone. Recently, the DOTr-LTO successfully held the first Road Safety Congress last February 27 – 28, 2019 in Zamboanga City.

The event itself is part of the LTO Region IX's Road Safety Program called Partnership for Enhanced Road Safety (PERS). With a theme 'Making our roads safer through convergence', the program promotes a unified and holistic, proactive approach to address road safety issues in the region.

“We are very excited to have this activity because many do not realize that the many injuries and deaths are caused mainly by accidents and road crashes,” said Edgar Galvante, LTO Chief.

During the program proper, the PERS Program and the Road Safety Module were launched. Solidarity messages and testimonies from road crash survivors were also delivered, while a role-playing demonstration of the module was conducted as well. On the second day, the event highlighted the “Walk for Road Safety” parade, participated in by students from different schools, government agencies, and road safety advocacy and transport groups.

For LTO Region IX Regional Director Aminola Abaton, the joint efforts of all parties during the Road Safety Congress will benefit the safety and security of the younger generation.

“It’s about time that we put road safety in the frontline. It should be the prime fight to ensure that the children will be safe. This is part of the campaign of our convergence, and this will only happen if all parties concerned joined forces,” added Abaton. 

Also present during the two-day event was the Department of Education (DEPED), who showed eagerness to integrate the 'Students Today, Road Users Tomorrow' (STRUT) road safety module that was developed by LTO Region 5 for the K-12 curriculum in Region 9.

There was also a workshop wherein various groups were able to talk about issues and concerns, as well as the solutions/strategies needed for improved road safety. Each solution was built on the five pillars of road safety: education, enactment of laws, emergency response, enforcement, and engineering.

In the future, the DOTr and LTO are hopeful that the Road Safety Congress will reach other parts of the country in order to safeguard the future generation when it comes to road safety.