Cebu's traffic situation has turned from bad to worse in recent memory. It has become a major problem in Cebu. So I took on a few road trips with my brother to investigate why traffic is bad in Cebu, Philippines. In some occasions, I took some snapshots of these factors.
Note: This article is a prequel to the 8-part Traffic Solutions for Cebu series:
Part 1: Pedestrian Safety in Cebu
Part 2: Role of Public Transportation in Cebu
Part 3: Obey Traffic Rules in Cebu
Part 4: Motorcycle Safety in Cebu
Part 5: Defensive Driving in Cebu
Part 6: Appeal to the Business Community in Cebu
Part 7: Stricter Law Enforcement in Cebu
Part 8: Government Solutions in Cebu
Why Traffic is Bad in Cebu, Philippines: Vehicles Stopping at Non-Designated Stops
It is common for public utility vehicles to stop at non-designated stops to load or unload passengers. This is the same for jeepneys, buses, tricycles, GT express vans, and taxicabs. Many privately-owned vehicle drivers are guilty of this too. And it seems nobody cares that they are causing traffic obstruction when they do this.
Why Traffic is Bad in Cebu, Philippines: Irresponsible Parking
Parking on Streets
The city government of Cebu has turned some roadsides into parking spots despite being told by the court that it is not legal. This leaves some road one or two less lanes to drive on.
Parking on Non-designated Parking Areas
Many motorists park their vehicles in places that are not designated parking areas. Some park on non-designated parking spots and put their emergency blinkers on. Is that supposed to be legal? There is clearly a need for responsible driver education for Cebuano motorists.
Occupying More than One Parking Slot
Some people are inconsiderate and occupy two parking slots. Although, I wouldn't say this causes traffic in any way, it is this inconsiderate character that is also evident in most other situations that contribute to the traffic problem.
Why Traffic is Bad in Cebu, Philippines: Drivers With No Respect for Junction Boxes
Junction boxes placed on busy intersections in Metro Cebu serve no purpose. Drivers take no heed that they are supposed to free these junction boxes instead of crowd them. The result is chaos, more traffic congestion, heavy traffic jams, and sometimes even accidents.
Why Traffic is Bad in Cebu, Philippines: Driving On The Wrong Lane or Counter-flowing
Many drivers in Cebu do not seem to understand or respect lanes. Some drive on two lanes and many drivers counterflow to oncoming traffic. Cebu drivers are probably among the most impatient drivers that they wouldn't care to break established traffic rules, guidelines, and common ethics.
Why Traffic is Bad in Cebu, Philippines: Drivers Crisscrossing Lanes
Drivers crisscrossing lanes are yet another indication of how impatient drivers in Cebu are. What's worse is that some don't even use their turn lights to indicate they are changing lanes.
Why Traffic is Bad in Cebu, Philippines: Poor Street Lighting at Night
The streets of Metro Cebu are generally dark at night. There seems to be inadequate lighting that is dangerous to road users. Some drivers are forced to use their high beam lights so they can see farther ahead.
Why Traffic is Bad in Cebu, Philippines: Unending Road Repairs
Sometimes I wonder why there is no end to road repairs in Cebu. Why can't they just build a good road that lasts long enough than do annoying regular repairs because it regularly breaks down.
Why Traffic is Bad in Cebu, Philippines: Reckless Motorcycle Drivers
Reckless motorcycle drivers abound in Cebu. They don't follow lanes, they weave through the narrowest of spaces between cars, many don't use helmets, overload their bikes, split lanes recklessly, don't use their headlights at night, and many times they also disregard traffic lights. No wonder that there are a lot of accidents in Cebu involving motorcycles.
Why Traffic is Bad in Cebu, Philippines: Jaywalking Pedestrians
Pedestrians contribute to Cebu's traffic woes too. Many don't use pedestrian lanes or crosswalks, elevated walkways, or sidewalks exposing themselves to the danger of being hit by vehicles. There is a need to promote pedestrian safety.
Why Traffic is Bad in Cebu, Philippines: Drivers With No Respect for Pedestrians
Courtesy to pedestrians is not the norm for drivers in Cebu. Don't expect drivers in Cebu to stop when you try to cross a pedestrian lane.
Why Traffic is Bad in Cebu, Philippines: Overspeeding
Many drivers in Cebu ignore speed limits. Many accidents happen because of overspeeding. This is another indication of how impatient drivers in Cebu are.
Why Traffic is Bad in Cebu, Philippines: Disregard for the 4-way Stop Rule
The 4-way stop is supposed to be a universally-accepted ethic for drivers around the world. But in Cebu, there is no regard for the 4-way stop it seems. In fact, the only road sign I see that promote this driver behavior is within the private road leading to Maria Luisa Subdivision in Banilad.
Why Traffic is Bad in Cebu, Philippines: Misused Sidewalks
Sidewalks in Cebu are so crowded that pedestrians are forced to walk on the roads thereby worsening traffic congestion.
Why Traffic is Bad in Cebu, Philippines: Generally Disobeying Traffic Rules
Generally, traffic rules in Cebu are only followed when there is a traffic enforcer around. I am not saying that everyone does this. I am saying that it is common for many drivers in Cebu to disobey traffic rules when no one who has the power to apprehend them is watching.