The Bicol Central Station (BCS) here has started monitoring passengers coming into the city for the All Saints Day and All Souls Day of which the celebrations on November 1 and 2, are covered by the 5-day-long weekend.
BCS General Manager Roderick Reforsado said that the monitoring of passengers aims to safeguard the passengers from any untoward incident. He said the policy would also help his office to obtain an estimate on the number of people who will stay in the city for the long weekend and will troop to the bus terminal after the All Saints Day to go back to their places of origin.
He said the bus terminal has to determine the number of passengers to achieve good customer service.
The entire country will have the benefit of a 5-day-long weekend next week beginning October 29 (Saturday), this year, after President Marcos Jr. signed Proclamation No. 79 declaring October 31, a Monday, as special non-working holiday. The holiday was declared “to strengthen family ties and promote domestic tourism,” the document said.
“November 2 is usually declared by the president as special non-working day. To make November 2 as a permanent regular holiday, a law must be passed by the Congress of the Philippines to that effect,” a research site said.
“At present, we are still seeing a normal number of incoming passengers from Manila and other regions. We expect, however, an influx of several hundreds of passengers coming into the city by next week,” Reforsado said.
Next week, a number of Naga City Police Office personnel will be sent to the bus terminal to assist the BCS management in ensuring the safety and security of people while inside the facility.
Reforsado said that the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) and Land Transportation Office in the city will also send personnel to the area to check the road worthiness of the buses, franchises, Certificates of Public Convenience (CPC), and the permits being required from the bus operators to be able to transport passengers.
Reforsado said that the probability to achieve more than 100 bus trips daily from Naga to Manila (vice versa) after the ‘pyesta nin mga kalag’ is very high.
He said that the situation is almost similar to what happened several days after the Peñafrancia fiesta during which the BCS has to dispatch 120 Naga-Manila daily bus trips due to overwhelming number of passengers leaving the city.
During the same period, the bus terminal in the city has recorded 300 to 400 Naga-Legazpi and Naga-Daet roundtrips including intra-provincial bus trips, the local trips taking place from Naga to different municipalities in the province of Camarines Sur.
Reforsado said given that All Saints Day and All Souls Day are traditionally observed throughout the country, the chance for the BCS to acquire an augmented fleet of buses are very slim in view of the fact that almost all bus terminals in the country require additional units to achieve an expeditious transporting of passengers.
(Jason B. Neola, CEPPIO.)