It seems the Toll Regulatory Board (TRB) and the Department of Transportation (DOTr) have had enough of motorists that continue to use expressways with insufficient load on their RFID tags. To curb this type of behavior, the TRB has announced that it will impose a '3-strike policy' against motorists that keep on entering expressways with insufficient load.
During a recent press briefing, Garry De Guzman, DOTr Undersecretary for Transportation and alternative chairman for the TRB, stated that there are numerous motorists deliberately entering the expressway with insufficient RFID load. With the full implementation of the cashless transactions still being reviewed, De Guzman adds that motorists are abusing the transition period since violators will not be penalized for not having enough load.
“In cashless transactions, we knew that we deferred the full implementation in the sense that you can still use the tollways even without an RFID installed. You will not be penalized yet if you use the tollways without an RFID installed or [have] insufficient balance,” said De Guzman.
Fed up with the constant abuse, DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade has ordered the TRB to adopt a 3-strike policy against motorists that enter expressways without sufficient load.
“Mag-a-adopt na kami ng three-strike policy, kumbaga kapag naka [three] strikes ka na na pumapasok ng RFID lanes na wala ka namang load huhulihin ka na,” said Tugade.
[We’ll soon adopt a 3-strike policy. For example, if a motorist enters the tollways for the third time without sufficient RFID load, he or she will be ticketed]
The DOTr hopes the measure will deter abusers of the 'no-apprehension policy' currently imposed. However, there is no exact date yet as to when the DOTr will order the TRB to put the 3-strike policy in place.
So if you want to avoid being fined for not having enough load on your RFID, make sure you top up your RFID balance before hitting the expressways.