Bong Nebrija shows how being an ‘usisero’ causes heavy traffic

Keep your eyes on the road
by Drei Laurel | Jun 4, 2021
PHOTO: Francis Malasig

Imagine this: You’re stuck in traffic and almost late for work because of something going on up ahead. Waze tells you there’s fender bender a couple of hundred meters in front of you, so you shrug it off and sit patiently in your car, slowly inching your way towards the office.

Thing is, once you actually reach the scene of whatever it is that’s going on, you see the cars involved have already been moved to the side of the road to allow traffic to flow freely. So, what the hell is the reason for the logjam?

The answer is simple: Nosy motorists who slow down to have a peek, or grind to a near-halt to take in the sights and sounds of the incident, rather. There’s a term for them in Filipino you’re probably familiar with: Usisero.

Such was the case earlier this morning along the Northbound side of the Quezon Avenue flyover. Following an incident where a car hit a bollard, Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) traffic chief Bong Nebrija observed that nosy motorists were slowing down trying to see what’s going on. This, despite the vehicle involved in the mishap having already been moved away from traffic.

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Nebrija took the opportunity to go live on Facebook to remind everyone to mind their own business on the road.

Eto po dalawang linya na ’to clear ’to,” Nebrija said in the video, pointing out two lanes with traffic buildup. “Hindi naman siya affected ng aksidente, pero makikita niyo po ano nag cause ng delay ano. ’Yan ang tinatawag kong usisero.”

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“’Yan po ay kadalasan ang cause ng delay. They slow down and then they check. Ayan tignan mo,” he adds, making light of the situation by pointing out every motorist he captures on video.

Yung may aksidente na hindi ka naman involved, instead na dirediretso ka, eh you slow down to check on the accident. I think it’s a natural reaction sa mga driver to check on what has happened. Hindi rin naman ako excused diyan. Pero ’yan po ang nangyayari pag nagkakaroon ng aksidente.”

Lesson? If you aren’t involved or planning to lend a helping hand, keep it moving. Motorists have places to be, you know. Are you guilty of doing this?

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PHOTO: Francis Malasig
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