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Quezon City News

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Quezon City is ramping up the distribution of free bicycle helmets as the regulation requiring bicycle riders traversing the city to use safety headgear will be strictly enforced by the end of the month.

“We will continue the distribution of free helmets as consideration to those who still don’t have one,” said Mayor Joy Belmonte.

“Ito’y bahagi ng tulong ng pamahalaang lungsod, lalo na doon sa mga walang kakayahang bumili ng helmet, upang matiyak ang kaligtasan ng lahat na nagbibisikleta sa ating siyudad. At the same time, the extra two weeks will give riders an opportunity to comply,” she added.

Belmonte approved Ordinance No. SP-2942, introduced by Councilors Maria Diorella Sotto, Kate Galang-Coseteng and Candy Medina, late last month to encourage the wearing of bicycle helmets for protection. The ordinance was set to be enforced beginning today, but Mayor Belmonte and the Department of Public Order and Safety (DPOS) gave bicycle riders more time to comply with the regulation, and to enable the city government to reach out to other financially vulnerable riders.

The Ordinance initially set fines of P1,000, P3,000 and P5,000 for the first, second and third offense, respectively, but Belmonte convinced the City Council to lower the penalties to P300, P500 and P1,000.

As the lead agency mandated to enforce the Ordinance, the Department of Public Order and Safety initially distributed 3,500 free safety helmets to bicycle riders.

According to DPOS head retired Gen. Elmo San Diego, the office aims to distribute 200 free helmets today (Thursday) and an average of 100 in the next few days.

Instead of imposing fines starting today, the DPOS will only issue warnings and conduct information dissemination.

“Warning at paalala muna ang ating ibibigay sa mga mahuhuli sa mga susunod na araw bago natin tuluyang ipatupad ang Ordinansa,” said San Diego.

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