Now that Angkas is readying its 27,000 rider-partners for the six-month pilot run that may happen in July this year, the ride-hailing company has laid down six restrictions on passengers to ensure their safety and comfort during the ride.
The commuting public will see these restrictions printed on official leaflets that will be shown by riders to their passengers before the latter are allowed to mount the bike. The leaflets are attached tp lanyards, and will always be worn by the riders along with the official Angkas vests that have transparent pockets to show their identification cards. The reflectorized vests also indicate the official numbers of the riders.
Yesterday, the Highway Patrol Group (HPG) announced its support for the government-sanctioned pilot run of Angkas, saying it is strongly aligned with their mandate of helping Filipinos safely traverse the streets.
In order to ensure safety at all times, riders have the right to deny passengers of their services when at least one of the six restrictions is detected. Here they are:
1) Wearing slippers or loose clothing is not allowed.
Women passengers with long dresses or bell-bottom pants may not be allowed to board an Angkas bike their clothing might get entangled with the chain or any other moving part of the vehicle. And same as with the regulation set by the Land Transportation Office (LTO) on the proper riding attire for riders, passengers wearing slippers are also prohibited from riding an Angkas bike.
2) Don’t use the phone while riding.
Sorry, guys—taking selfies or photos of the surroundings during the ride is strictly prohibited. This will prevent the unnecessary movement of the passenger during the trip. Like the rider, all passengers must pay attention to the surroundings.
3) Riders must be of sound mind and body.
If the rider notices that the passenger is high on drugs, he will immediately cancel the trip. The same goes for a passenger who is intoxicated. We can only surmise now that Angkas riders will use their judgment in evaluating if the passenger is sober or not.
Another part of the pre-ride safety briefing is for the Angkas rider to ask a passenger if he or she has heart problems or epilepsy. Also, those feeling sleepy will be automatically denied a ride.
4) Take note of the height requirement.
Children whose feet cannot reach the passenger foot pegs are not allowed to ride an Angkas bike. This restriction already echoes an existing law.
5) The proper seating position must be observed.
We believe that Angkas has no tendency to discriminate against lady passengers who sit sideways on the saddle because they’re wearing a skirt. The simple fact is that sitting sideways can compromise the safety of the passenger, especially when the motorbike falls on the side where he or she is not facing.
6) Size does matter.
This is an important consideration for everyone taking on passengers on a bike. If the rider feels that the passenger is either too big or too heavy, and that he’ll have difficulty balancing the motorcycle as a result, he can refuse to give the passenger a ride. Passengers who are too heavy or too tall will shift to weight to the rear, causing the front wheels to lose traction or, worse, the bike to go do an uncontrollable wheelie.
Based on our conversation with some Angkas riders, these restrictions against passengers will be applied based on their judgment. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.