Despite a much-publicized lashing by Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, Republic Act 11235 or “An Act Preventing and Penalizing the Use of Motorcycles in The Commission of Crimes by Requiring Bigger, Readable and Color-Coded Number Plates and Identification Marks, and For Other Purposes” aka the Doble Plaka Law is still a go.
With no written instruction from the President to the Land Transportation Office to halt the law, the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) is being drafted quietly behind the scenes. The target date of effectivity? This July 2019.
We happen to receiving a working copy of the IRR and here are some pertinent points:
- Republic Act 11235 will cover all motorcycles and thus, even those whose registration will be renewed will have to use these bigger, readable plates. In fact, registrations done before the effectivity of the IRR shall carry with it the application of the new plate design.
- If the motorcycle is still without an issued number plate prior to Republic Act 11235: the number plate color shall be based on the region of the New Registration Unit where the motorcycle was initially registered and the same shall be issued at the Regional Office concerned.
- If the motorcycle has an issued number plate prior to Republic Act 11235: The number plate color shall be based on the owner’s present/current residential address and shall be issued at the Regional Office concerned.
- For new and yet-to-be-registered motorcycles, the number plate color shall be based on the region of the District Office where the motorcycle is to be registered and shall be released at the Regional Office concerned during the initial phase. However, upon the completion of the RFID distribution to all LTO Offices, the color-coded plates shall be issued at the District Office concerned.
- Motorcycles refer to a powered two or three-wheeled motor vehicle, including, but not limited to, scooters, mopeds, and motorcycles with appendages such as sidecars, tricycles, or trikes. This shall include government-owned vehicles.
- Owner is defined as any person who owns or is the registered owner of a motorcycle or is in the process of registration thereof. Under this IRR, it also refers to any person who has actual control and possession of a motorcycle, whether it is registered or not.
- The LTO is set to issue bigger, readable, and color-coded number plates for every motorcycle which consists of a metal number plate to be installed at the rear of the motorcycle, and a decal plate to be displayed in its front.
- The measurement of the new metal rear plate is 195 mm in width and 175 mm in height. The font is set at 57 mm tall.
- The front decal plate is 125 mm in width and 95 mm in height with the font size at 40 mm tall.
- The new plate will also adopt a color scheme which quickly identifies the motorcycle in question. For private motorcycles, it features a two-tone scheme with the following assigned colors: Northern Luzon (White / Green), Central Luzon (White / Blue), Southern Luzon (White / Gray), NCR (White), Northern Mindanao (Green / White), Central Mindanao (Blue / White), Southern Mindanao (Gray / White), Western Visayas (Beige / White), Eastern Visayas (Lavender / White).
- Other types of motorcycles will follow the following color scheme: Public Utility Motorcycle (yellow background with black Lettering), Government Motorcycle (white background with red lettering), Diplomatic Motorcycle (white background with blue lettering), and Electric Motorcycle (white background with orange lettering).
- Rear number plate lights will be mandatory and must be readable from a distance of 15 meters.
- The proposed penalties for not following the law is jail time or a fine of not less than P 50,000 but not more than P 100,000
- A motorcycle driven without a number plate or a readable number plate shall be stopped, and such motorcycle shall be seized by law enforcers and surrendered within 24 hours to the Philippine National Police (PNP).
- The owner of such motorcycle may redeem his or her seized motorcycle from the LTO upon proof of ownership, payment of the costs of seizure, and compliance with a number plate or readable number plate.
- If the number plate of a motorcycle is lost, damaged, or stolen, the owner of such motorcycle shall report the same within 24 hours to the Joint LTO and PNP Operations and Control Center. The owner shall, within 72 hours from the time the loss or damage was reported, submit a duly notarized Affidavit to the nearest LTO Office. The LTO shall issue a certification of application for replacement plate, and an authority to use improvised plates which shall be valid until the issuance of the replacement plate.
- Failure of the owner to report the same and apply for a replacement plate from the LTO within the periods prescribed herein shall subject the owner to a fine of not less than P 20,000 but not more than P 50,000.
- However, if the lost, damaged, or stolen number plate or readable number plate is used in connection with a crime, the failure of the owner to report within 3 days that the motorcycle is lost, damaged, or stolen, shall subject the owner to a penalty of imprisonment.
- If an owner is caught erasing, tampering, forging, imitating, covering, or concealing a number plate he shall be fined P 50,000 to P 100,000, and imprisoned. The same goes for the use of a stolen number plate.