No-contact apprehension became a trending topic in the last few days of June when Quezon City announced the full implementation of its no-contact apprehension program (NCAP) effective July 1.
The city is the fourth in the National Capital Region to make use of traffic cameras and other surveillance systems to catch and penalize traffic violators. Other local government units (LGUs) with NCAPs in place are Manila City, Parañaque City, and Valenzuela City. The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) also has a metro-wide NCAP in place.
But what are the common traffic violations captured by traffic cameras? We checked out the NCAP advisories on the social media channels of the aforementioned LGUs, and the list below includes the common violations that motorists were warned about:
1) Driving against the flow of traffic
This is better known here as counterflow. Do note that some LGUs implement counterflow schemes during rush hour, and traffic enforcers could open a counterflow lane in case of heavy traffic or accidents.
MORE ABOUT NO-CONTACT APPREHENSION:
Everything you need to know about Quezon City’s no-contact apprehension program
Quick guide: How to get a copy of your Manila City no-contact apprehension NOV via email
2) Disregarding traffic lights and signs
This includes beating the read light, making an illegal turn (for example, not following a ‘no right turn on red’ sign), and ignoring no loading/unloading zones and no-parking signs. According to the MMDA, disregarding traffic signs is the top traffic violation in 2021.
3) Reckless driving
You could be slapped a penalty for not using headlamps and signal lights, driving with defective brake lights, and changing lanes illegally—like when the road markings prohibit lane changes or overtakes.
4) Obstructing a pedestrian lane
Blocking a pedestrian lane and, worse, parking on are surefire ways to get a notice of violation (NOV) in your mailbox.
5) Stopping in the yellow box
Don’t cross an intersection unless there’s a clear space on the other side for you to slot into. If the light turns red and you’re caught inside the yellow box (or even if your tires are simply touching its edges), you’ll get fined.
Be sure to keep within the speed limit at all times.
7) Violating the Anti-Distracted Driving Act (ADDA)
This traffic violation comes with a hefty fine. Don’t hold—let alone use—your mobile phone while you’re driving, even if the vehicle is stopped at an intersection.
8) Motorcycles and four-wheeled vehicles using the bike lanes
You may cross a bicycle lane to make a turn or enter a driveway, but cyclists must be given right of way. Traffic enforcers, notably in Quezon City, are strictly monitoring bike lanes, too. You’ve been warned.
9) Not wearing a seatbelt
If you’re the driver, you’re always at fault here, whether it’s you or your passengers who forgot to put on the seatbelt.
10) Not wearing a standard protective helmet
Same as in the previous item: If you’re the rider of the motorcycle, you’ll be the one who’ll get slapped with a fine, whether it’s you or your backrider who is not wearing a helmet. Here’s our guide to different helmet types.
11) Driving an unregistered vehicle
Unregistered means the vehicle is either not registered with the LTO at all, or its registration is expired, suspended, revoked, or incorrect. For everything you need to know about registering your motor vehicle, click here.
12) Failing to attach license plates properly
All letters and numbers on the license plates must be legible, and the plates must be mounted in the proper positions in front and at the back of the vehicle. Don’t try to avoid violations by using a tinted plate holder or covering the license plate.
13) Cutting trips
Public utility vehicles (PUVs) must follow and complete the designated route stated on their franchise.
14) Displaying an incorrect signboard
Again, the signboard should conform with the route stated on a PUV’s franchise.
15) Specific vehicle bans
In general, national highways are off-limits to pedicabs and tricycles. Truck drivers and operators, too, should take note of truck ban hours and locations.
If you do receive an NCAP notice of violation (NOV) by mail, you can contest the violation by filing an appeal before the apprehending body. We’ve written an explainer on that here. Be sure to have solid proof to contest the NOV, too. And if your vehicle is due for registration renewal, you can check beforehand if you have unsettled fines from NCAP violations.
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