With the easing of travel restrictions and in anticipation of increased traffic volume this ‘Undas’ holidays, the Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation (MPTC) will step up its operations as it implements the “Safe Trip Mo Sagot Ko” (SMSK) along the NLEX, SCTEX, CAVITEX, C5 LINK, and CALAX from October 29 to November 2, 2021.
Now on its 12th year, the SMSK is the motorist assistance program of the MPTC meant to enhance all services along its expressway network for a safer and more comfortable journey.
The MPTC operations teams have been on heightened alert as early as October 22 and have boosted customer services and safety protocols as it expects the influx of motorists who will visit their departed loved ones before cemeteries, memorial parks, and columbaria close from October 29 to November 2 to minimize the risk of COVID-19 transmission.
“We remain committed to provide our motorists with ease of travel, ensure their safety, and assist them immediately this season as we also continue to observe COVID-19 protocols for the protection of our customers and employees,” said MPTC President and CEO Rodrigo E. Franco.
With traffic growth of 10% anticipated in NLEX-SCTEX, traffic management teams will adopt extended working hours to closely monitor and manage the expected high volume of vehicles in Balintawak, Mindanao, Karuhatan, Bocaue, San Simon, San Fernando, Tarlac and Tipo.
Around 1,200 patrol crews, traffic marshals, security teams, and lane personnel will be deployed to ensure safety and provide immediate assistance to motorists. Emergency medical services and incident response teams will also be fielded at strategic areas of the expressways.
Due to the implementation of the Alert Level 3 in NCR, Cavite, and Laguna per the IATF’s latest resolution, average daily traffic in CAVITEX, C5 LINK, and CALAX is expected to increase around 11% to 15%. All Customer Service Centers in the said expressways will be operational 24/7 and ambulant tellers will be ready to assist motorists in cash lanes, and toll personnel will be augmented to assist motorists in RFID lanes.
Construction and lane closures along the mainline road of all MPTC expressways will be suspended from October 27 until November 2 unless safety repairs are necessary. For those traveling with Class 1 or light vehicles, free 24-hour towing service to the nearest exit will be available from October 29, 6:00 a.m. to November 2, 6:00 a.m.
Updated traffic situation will be posted on the company’s social media accounts, while the 24/7 Hotline (1-35000) will also be ready to address customer concerns.
To further facilitate faster and safer travel, the tollway company is encouraging motorists to use RFID as means of toll payment to avoid queues at the cash lanes. Those who have no RFID may have the sticker installed before entering the expressways and just have to pay the initial load. Meanwhile, existing RFID users are advised to make sure that their accounts have sufficient balance to cover their trips. Motorists may visit the Easytrip website: www.easytrip.ph for the complete list of installation sites and reloading options.
This year’s SMSK is supported by Prestone.