Newspaper reports say the Department of Trade and Industry has inspected the helmets of only 30 percent of registered motorcycle owners in the National Capital Region. Outside NCR, the rate is even lower—only 25 percent.
Trade Undersecretary Zenaida C. Maglaya is quoted as saying that, although there are three million registered motorcycles in the country, the number of helmets that need to be inspected can be twice or thrice that number, as it is not just the driver, but passengers, too, who are required to wear protective headgear.
Maglaya says the low turnout may be due to the fact that many motorcycle helmets now have the ICC marks or have replaced the old with new ones that bear the ICC marks. She adds that others may have simply ignored the government standards and safety policy.
I am inclined to think the third reason is the more likely explanation.
Just look at all the headgears you see motorcyclists and their riders are wearing on our streets. You would think we have a costume party every day. People wear flimsy bicycle helmets or the sturdier, but still not adequate protection for riding motorcycles, baseball helmets. They will probably be better protected by flak helmets, the kind soldiers wear in war zones.
Some proclaim their invincibility by wearing ball (yes, it is ball, not bull as some people call it, because it is short for baseball) caps, colorful bandanas or large handkerchiefs. Others simply go bareheaded.
I am glad to know that by Jan. 1, 2013, Republic Act No. 10054, the Motorcycle Helmet Act of 2010, will be fully implemented by the Land Transportation Office, and violators will be penalized. People should be made to realize wearing the right helmet is primarily for their protection and not an annoying government imposition. A fragile head is no match for concrete streets.
New lifestyle card
Megaworld Corp. has partnered with Citibank in the Philippines in a new lifestyle card. The Megaworld Citibank Card “will enable customers to make the most of the live-work-play environment that we have built into our townships,” according to Kevin Tan, first vice president of Megaworld Corp.
The new card, he adds, “is offering never-before-seen benefits and freebies like rebates, free parking, movie passes,” among others.
Sergio Zanatti, Citibank consumer business manager, says the new card “is not just an ordinary card, as it brings the Megaworld lifestyle experience to cardholders.”
Citi country officer Sanjiv Vohra says Megaworld is elevating the real estate business to world-class standards.
Meanwhile, new Cebu Pacific Citibank cardholders must book their flights before Dec. 15 or five working days prior to preferred departure date to avail of the Juan-Way Ticket. Eligible cardholders are those who got their cards not later than Nov. 30 and have a minimum single-receipt or accumulated purchase of P2,000 prior to booking date.
The free one-way ticket is available for all domestic destinations, except Caticlan, gateway to the resort island of Boracay. Travel period is until Feb. 15. To book the flight, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Send letters to The Consumer, Lifestyle Section, Philippine Daily Inquirer, 1098 Chino Roces Ave. cor. Mascardo and Yague Sts., 1204 Makati City; fax 8974793/94; or e-mail email@example.com.