law enforcement, Philippines, transportation

Philippines: Manila development authority adopts fingerprint biometrics in bus dispatch and monitoring system

UPDATED – January 31 below:

MMDA to begin biometrics-based bus monitoring system Jan. 31 (GMA News)

On Thursday, Jan. 31, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority will put in effect a biometric-based bus dispatch and monitoring system to regulate the number of public utility buses along EDSA.

The Bus Management and Dispatch System (BMDS), also monitors the drivers of these buses, the MMDA said Wednesday.

“Our aim is to instill discipline among PUB drivers and make them aware that we at the MMDA, together with other agencies, are capable of monitoring them, especially their driving behavior,” the MMDA website quoted chairman Francis Tolentino as saying.

According to the article, the new system meets several goals associated with the smooth running of the Manila bus system, a system that involves central coordination of many private providers. The new system seeks to better coordinate the providers to provide optimum service levels as demand changes and to better insure that the drivers don’t have too many outstanding traffic violations.

UPDATE…
Finally, MMDA stops bus driver with 99 violations (Inquirer News)

Before he could be issued a ticket for his 100th traffic violation, this bus driver was told to keep off the road on the first day of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority’s (MMDA) Bus Management and Dispatch System (BMDS).

MMDA Assistant General Manager Emerson Carlos said the man, one of several drivers grounded on Thursday, was shown to have 99 unsettled traffic tickets.

Launched Thursday, the BMDS seeks to cut down the number of unsafe buses on the road by preventing public utility bus (PUB) drivers with previous traffic records from even driving out of their terminals.

Under the scheme, drivers have to undergo fingerprint or biometric scanning at designated dispatch terminals before they are given the go signal to ply their routes.

That didn’t take long! This and 284 other drivers were grounded on the first day of the new system’s operation.

It’s not clear that it was the fingerprint provision of the new program that caught out the bus driver with 99 unaddressed violations but it does give the reader a sense of the issues the MMDA is grappling with.

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