Counterflowing on a one-way street

I hate pedicabs although, maybe, I shouldn’t. Sam studies in a school where flashfloods are common and when the streets do get submerged in murky waters, the only way to manage the distance between the condo and the school is via pedicabs.

But pedicab drivers can be abusive. They charge outrageous prices when they know that commuters are desperate. Sam and her friends once paid P180 for a two-block ride.

Look at the pedicab driver in the photo — that’s a one-way street in Manila and what is he doing? Not only is he counterflowing, he isn’t even looking where’s he’s going. And the worst part? If he hits your vehicle, you can’t even make him pay for the damage.

Because pedicabs are non-motorized vehicles, registration and licensing are not required as far as I know, although some local governments regulate them. Ergo, no insurance. In fact, I don’t think pedicab drivers are required to have a valid driver’s license.

If there’s a collision involving a motorized vehicle and a pedicab and the pedicab passengers get injured, they are more likely to go after the owner of the other vehicle, irrespective of whose fault caused the mishap. Oh, you know, the mentality that if he’s rich enough to own a vehicle, then, there’s something to be squeezed out of him.

I wonder what the position is of the presidential and vice presidential candidates on the strict regulation of pedicabs and tricycles.


  1. says

    Drive to Cabanatuan City in Nueva Ecija and you’ll see why it’s called TRYCICLE CAPITAL OF THE PHILIPPINES.

    Trycicles drive on and rule the main highway! I don’t care about the driver but do care about the passengers, so I keep my patience to the max whenever I drive around tricycles, pedicabs and yes, motorcycles.

    Since mid December, I have personally seen half a dozen accidents involving motorcycles, and my car has been “grazed” by two.

    What I don’t understand are motorcyle drivers who take riders including children sandwiched between driver and mother, and they just whiz in and out of traffic/cars.

    There should be a special lane for these wackos.

    • d0d0ng says

      I am quite surprised that pedicab drivers or cyclists are not covered by LTO in the Philippines and can be impounded for violations.

      In the US, driving in public road is a privilege given by the state subject to public safety. In most state laws, there is the code “cyclists have the same rights and DUTIES as that of motorists”. So the police can apprehend them for road violations.

  2. Ken Lovell says

    Around these parts (Malabon City), not only pedicab drivers but also tricycles seem to think that one-way street rules do not apply to them. Traffic flow is constantly interrupted by having to avoid drivers going against the flow, and enforcers seem reluctant to do anything about it.

  3. says

    Our village is practically swarming with tricycles. Since it’s a really BIG village, almost all of them charge a special fair (as opposed to the regular P7-10) with the minimum being more expensive than an fx ride. They are very handy, but over the years they have developed a mentality that they cannot be touched. They swerve and cut and make “singet” in ways that are threatening to not only other vehicles but also to their passengers.

    The more annoying thing is that they will be the one to give you an “evil eye” in an almost collision- and of course you have no choice but to give way because you know that if your vehicle gets a scratch he doesn’t have the money to pay. (cue in the mumbling of “pasenxa na, naghahanap buhay lang” crap).

  4. says

    One time we were driving home from Lucena via Teresa. We were on a convoy and our friends’ car was in front of us. Then, a tricyle hit it from behind. Next thing we knew, our friends were out of the car and the wife (who was driving) had SLAPPED the tricycle driver. Literally. :lol:

  5. says

    Oh I can’t blame her for slapping the driver….

    I too get so pissed every time I’m driving in the Philippines. I hate it when tricycles, pedicabs, jeepneys and MOTORCYCLES make singit or swerve like crazy and even counter flow on the opposite lane then will make singit back to our lane just to get ahead of us who are disciplined and patient enough to WAIT until the traffic moves? I can’t help it but nag about my discontent while driving because I feel like they’re disrespecting me and my Mom would always tell me that I’m the loudest driver she’s ever taken a ride with.

    let’s not forget those motorcycles. I’m sorry but I never feel sympathy or pity whenever I see in the news that they are in an accident.

    I also noticed that the local and national government seem not to care about these tricycles and pedicabs. Or maybe because they don’t drive they haven’t experienced all these.

    I also have a compilation of photos I took while driving like some kind of proof of evidence against them to remind myself that I’m not crazy; I just never got used to them and their ways.

    I really do believe and I’m always reminded everytime I’m driving that driving in the Philippines is like war. But we car owners have much more to lose. I hate it when I’m always driving carefully but it’s them who are careless. Sometimes when I feel like being bitchy I wanna roll my window down and shout at them drivers; “Mama! May pambayad ka ba kapag nakagasgas ka?!” But then I would never dare say it. Iniisip ko na lang baka super pagod na kasi sila from the long long hours of driving….