Friday, January 6, 2017
There's One in Every Crowd
Like every other urban area, Dumaguete is afflicted with congested traffic. It doesn't help that Dumaguete doesn't have many traffic offenses which the local police appear to believe is worth the trouble to enforce. Dumaguete may not be the largest city on Negros island, but it's not tiny by any stretch of the imagine, yet, there are no traffic lights or stop signs to be found here.
As of late, one traffic offense which the city has deemed worth dealing with is the problem of vehicles parking on the side of the National Highway. The local police have been aggressively writing tickets to drivers they find parked along the Highway.
Unfortunately, there is one area where enforcement is still a problem - the area where the runway of the Dumaguete airport meets the National Highway. Of course, there is a fence bordering the runway, however, there is a wide space between the fence and the highway where produce vendors will congregate in order to sell their fruits and vegetables. They'll gather by the side of the road come late afternoon/early evening. When these vendors are there, and people pull over in vehicles or walk across the road, the traffic becomes unbearable. This is done while most folks are going home from work and it makes driving to Sibulan from Dumaguete a nightmare.
I don't know if the election of Duterte has actually had anything to do with the change, but it wasn't long after he entered office that signs began popping up along the National Highway warning motorists not to park along the Highway. These signs have also been set out along the portion of the Highway that runs along the airport, but this area is technically outside the city limits of Dumaguete and it becomes a different jurisdiction. For months, vendors have continued to set up along the road.
Within the last day or so, the warning signs have been replaced in the area by the airport. The new signs specifically say that vendors are not to be in the area, and as of last night and this afternoon, the biggest portion of the vendors have not set up in the area. As can be seen in the photos, there is still one hold out. Just how long he'll be allowed to be there is anyone's guess.