In case you haven't noticed it yet, it's been getting hotter and hotter the past few weeks. That's because the dry season started on March 16, 2022, per PAGASA's announcement. As a result, summer is here, and that means the temperature will get even hotter in the coming months.
With the searing heat set to make things difficult for those working under the sun, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) will give its field personnel additional breaks. Effective April 1 (Friday), traffic enforcers and street sweepers of the agency will get an additional 30-minute “heat stroke break”. This is to protect them from illnesses this summer.
MMDA Chairman Atty. Romando Artes made it official after he signed a Memorandum Circular which sees the re-implementation of the extra break policy for its field personnel. Under the said policy, on-duty traffic enforcers and street sweepers are allowed to leave their posts in shifts and take a 30-minute break to rest.
For traffic enforcers working between 5:00 AM to 1:00 PM, the prescribed heat stroke break is from 10:00 AM to 10:30 AM or from 10:30 AM to 11:00 AM. Meanwhile, for those assigned from 1:00 PM to 9:00 PM, the break time will take place from 2:30 PM to 3:00 PM or 3:00 PM to 3:30 PM.
For those with shifts between 6:00 AM to 2:00 PM, the break is from 11:00 AM to 11:30 AM or 11:30 AM until 12:00 PM. Traffic enforcers assigned to a 2:00 PM to 10:00 PM shift can take a break between 3:00 PM until 3:30 PM or 3:30 PM to 4:00 PM.
For street sweepers who work from 6:00 AM to 2:00 PM shift, the prescribed break is from 11:00 AM to 11:30 AM or 11:30 AM to 12:00 PM. Those assigned to work from 7:00 AM until 4:00 PM can take a break from 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM. Last but not least, street sweepers that have to work from 11:00 AM to 7:00 PM, their break time is scheduled from 2:30 PM to 3:00 PM or 3:00 PM until 3:30 PM.
Those in the field can also avail of an additional 15-minute break time should the heat index or the 'human discomfort index' in Metro Manila reach 40 degrees Celsius and above.
With temperatures set to go higher as summer goes on, don't be surprised to see MMDA personnel taking breaks while managing traffic along EDSA. The heatstroke break policy will be in effect until May 31, 2022.