Press Release
March 7, 2023

Poe pitches creation of PH transportation safety board anew

Sen. Grace Poe made a fresh push for the passage of her bill creating the Philippine Transportation Safety Board (PTSB), saying truthful and thorough investigations are indispensable to addressing transportation accidents.

Poe brought to the plenary Senate Bill No. 1121 or the proposed PTSB Act which aims to establish an agency in charge of investigating transportation-related accidents and incidents.

"We need an independent agency that shall conduct independent, thorough, and truthful investigations, and provide corresponding and critical recommendations," she said in her sponsorship speech.

"The PTSB can save lives. And not just that, it is also hoped that it can resolve the issues in our transport systems without even causing a shut down. The enactment of this measure will be the first step towards safer and more effective journeys for all Filipinos," she added.

Poe said the New Year's Day air traffic shutdown that stranded passengers and cancelled flights and the series of recent air crashes should prompt the creation of the PTSB to expedite investigations, exact accountability and prevent the occurrence of similar tragedies.

She acknowledged that the Department of Transportation (DOTr), Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP), Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) and other concerned agencies can look into accidents within their jurisdiction.

However, Poe believes an independent and dedicated agency can more efficiently and expeditiously address such incidents.

"Much like what we saw during the New Year fiasco at the airport, CAAP will never say that

they were remiss with their maintenance. When a ship sinks, MARINA will never say that they failed to conduct the proper inspection. And when a fatal train accident occurs, DOTR will never admit that they bought a malfunctioning train or that corners were cut during construction," Poe stressed.

She cited that CAAP currently functions as regulator, operator and investigator during accidents.

"Even CAAP recognizes the disadvantages of these conflicting roles and supports any proposal to separate these functions. Congress had to step in because CAAP couldn't even figure out what went wrong," she said.

Poe maintained the measure is not a duplication of existing functions of some agencies and highlighted the need to "institute an independent agency with the proper expertise to investigate transportation accidents as per global standards."

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