Hotline vs smoke belchers

THE government’s relentless campaign against old, dilapidated and smoke- belching vehicles literally went a notch higher and into the cyberspace with the launching of a digital platform where the public can report violators in real time.

It is seen to put order in the streets as the government expects active participation from the public with the launching of “Sumbong Bulok, Sumbong Usok” (SBSU) hotline by the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the Inter-Agency Council for Traffic (i-ACT).

The “Sumbong Bulok, Sumbong Usok” (SBSU) is a digital chatbot hotline that may be accessed via the I-ACT Facebook Messenger.

People empowerment

The digital platform will automatically enable netizens to post a photo or a video, and identify the location where the violation was committed through GPS.

Transportation Secretary Arthur P. Tugade said the digital hotline is a form of people empowerment, and a way to encourage citizens to actively participate in effecting positive changes in the public transport front.

“This hotline is basically citizen empowerment. The success of this platform in helping realize the objectives of our “Tanggal Bulok, Tanggal Usok” operations will serve as a solid proof that if the government, its people, and technology are put into one, nothing is impossible,” Sec. Tugade said.

45 million FB users

With the hotline, around 45 million FB users in the Philippines can now report vehicles that are no longer road-worthy, smoke belching and colorum PUVs.

It can also be used to report illegally-parked vehicles, illegal vendors, among others.

Case management system

Tugade likewise noted that the SBSU digital platform will push I-ACT member agencies to act on concerns expeditiously, given that a case management system is integrated in the platform’s back end.

“This platform will not only help citizens send their complaints easily. This will also help our case managers and resolvers monitor the status of concerns. Makikita doon ng DOTr kung anong mga lugar ang pinakamaraming reklamo, at sinong mga ahensya ang hindi sumasagot sa reklamo,” Tugade added.

Expanded enforcement capabilities

For his part, DOTr Undersecretary for Road Transport and Infrastructure Tim Orbos said the SBSU hotline shall help expand the enforcement capabilities of I-ACT, especially since most traffic violators and errant drivers come out and ply the streets at night.

“With this hotline, we will be expanding our enforcement of traffic rules and regulations through our law-abiding citizens. Lalawak ang coverage natin dahil ang mga tao mismo ang siyang tutulong sa atin,” Usec. Orbos  said.

Apart from the DOTr, I-ACT member-agencies such as the Philippine National Police-Highway Patrol Group, Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board, Land Transportation Office, and the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority will be receiving, processing, and resolving reports and complaints sent to the SBSU Chatbot Hotline.

Currently, I-ACT is implementing the “Tanggal Usok, Tanggal Bulok” campaign in different parts of Metro Manila, as well as nearby provinces such as Pampanga, Bulacan, and Rizal.

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