Solo Drivers Can Now Be Apprehended for Not Wearing Masks if Windows are Open
Heads up, motorists: According to the Philippine National Police (PNP), solo drivers who aren’t wearing masks can only be apprehended by authorities if the vehicle he or she is driving has its windows down.
In a message to Inquirer.net, PNP spokesperson Bernard Banac clarified that no-mask apprehension for solo drivers can only happen if a car’s windows are down and the A/C is not being used, adding that the policy “refers only to jeeps, trucks, etc. with no A/C and windows are left open during travel.”
In a separate message to the news site, Joint Task Force COVID Shield commander Guillermo Eleazar said that he believes a mask is not necessary if a driver is alone inside a car.
“In my opinion, no need for a face mask if alone inside a four-wheel vehicle,” Eleazar shared.
The clarifications come following reported incidents of solo drivers being flagged down by authorities for not wearing a mask inside their vehicle.
In June, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) made it clear that solo drivers are not required to wear masks.
“In order to observe proper health and safety protocols, everyone is enjoined to wear face masks inside their vehicles, whether public or private,” DOTr assistant secretary Goddes Libiran said in a statement. “But, as clarified by LTO (Land Transportation Office), this does not apply to individuals driving their private vehicles alone. However, if the private individual has passengers with him inside the vehicle, wearing of face masks is mandatory.”
This story originally appeared on Topgear.com.ph. Minor edits have been made by the Esquiremag.ph editors.