Lawmakers are pushing for the passage of a measure requiring all private and public elementary and secondary schools to include the subject Road and Traffic Safety Education in their curriculum.
Reps. Rufus Rodriguez and Maximo Rodriguez, Jr. filed House Bill 6098 to be known as the Road Courtesy, Discipline and Traffic Safety Education Act as they stressed the need to start early in instilling discipline, road courtesy and obedience to traffic laws.
In filing the bill, Rodriguez cited a report of the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2004 stating that road traffic injuries accounted for 2.2% of total deaths, making it the 9th leading cause of death.
"The WHO, however, estimated that in 2030, the said percentage will increase to 3.5%, making it the 5th leading cause of death, only behind heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and lower respiratory infections," Rodriguez said.
"There seems to be a growing number of traffic accidents in the country which can be attributed mainly to the sheer disregard of traffic laws or ignorance. Attempts to curb traffic law violations have not been totally successful. In the Philippines, the WHO reported last April 2011, that road traffic accident deaths reached 8,175 or 1.94% of total deaths," Rodriguez added.
Under the measure, a new subject called Road, Courtesy, discipline and Traffic Safety Education shall be included in the school curriculum which will be taught starting from Grade 1 level up to 4th Year High School.
The topics in the new subject will include traffic signs and what they mean, rights and obligations of pedestrians, rights and obligations of drivers, rights and obligations of vehicle owners and public utility vehicles, Philippine laws on driving, fines and penalties, and a subject on Local Traffic Codes, among others.
The Department of Education, in collaboration with the Land Transportation Office, shall promulgate the necessary rules and regulations to implement the provisions of the Act.