‘Jeepneys phased out in Jan.’

THE government on Sunday confirmed that rundown jeepneys will be phased out starting January.

“The goal is to carry out what the President said, that by January, we will start to phase out deteriorated vehicles,” Transport Undersecretary Thomas Orbos said in Filipino. “We will start with public transportation. That is the start of the modernization program.”

Motor vehicle inspections by the Land Transporation Office will also begin in January, he said.

In October, President Rodrigo Duterte ordered jeepney drivers and operators to “modernize” or he would tow their vehicles off the roads.

Under the Public Utility Vehicle modernization program, jeepneys aged 15 years and older and non-Euro-4 compliant engines—about 180,000 all told—must be replaced with the new models prescribed by the government.

Other parts of the modernization program include the formation of drivers and operators cooperatives or corporations to provide better service, and route rationalization that would ease traffic on major roads.

“On Edsa , there are now 4,000 buses when in reality it can only accommodate 1,000. That’s where route rationalization can make it more efficient and could help ease traffic,” he said.