Monday, August 16, 2010

The Most Horrible Taxi Ride Ever

PAFC Transport Coop, Plate number PYM 320, white Toyota Corolla. Do not ride this taxi service!

My bottomless optimism almost hit rock bottom today after experiencing the most horrible taxi ride in my life. This ride's worse than the roach-infested taxi, the gas smelling taxi, the reckless driver, the time I got harassed (driver almost brought me in a motel), etc. etc. The taxi was in perfect condition and the driver drove just fine. What really irked me was the blatant deceit through it's taxi meter.

The cab's meter was a new one, it wasn't the usual red-lighted meter. I noticed because I always check if it was flagged and running properly (yes I am paranoid that way). We got the taxi at SM Mall of Asia and I was surprised to hear a sound coming from the meter. I was shocked to witness the meter jump from 30 pesos to 40 pesos as we were turning right to Macapagal Avenue. I thought I was just imagining things but it happened again and the meter was at 60 pesos even before we crossed Roxas Boulevard to the Airport Road.

I fell silent after that and communicated with Jay and Miguel via SMS so as not to alert the driver that we were having suspicions that his meter was rigged. I told Jay that I couldn't see meter because the driver was covering it with his hand on the clutch (isn't it supposed to be on the dashboard and not by the clutch?). He then started to send me messages on the amount. Traffic wasn't as bad as two weeks ago, but by the time we were beside the airport I was alarmed to see that the meter moved by 12.50 in four minutes.


6:39 p.m. PhP132.50
6:41 p.m. PhP135.00
6:43 p.m. PhP145.00

And we had barely moved 5 meters during that time (we were about to turn left to Kaingin Road). I was really alarmed by then because I remember the taxi we took 2 weeks ago (same route) billed us only 140 pesos (I added 30 pesos as goodwill because he was an honest driver and traffic was quite heavy). I realized then that we were being robbed. By the time we reached the end of Dona Soledad the bill was at 192.50 and I told Jay that I wanted to get off of the cab already since I was scared that the bill would reach 300 pesos.

I gave Jay 205 and tried to get out of the cab immediately (it was hard because the door handle was broken). When I got off a traffic enforcer approached the taxi and told the driver the he was holding traffic up. I wondered why Jay was taking so long to get out of the cab. Apparently the driver was asking him to give him 20 pesos more, but he didn't have any change and finally got out of the cab. I then told the traffic enforcer that the taxi's meter was rigged and that he was asking us for additional payment.

The traffic enforcer then told the driver that I had a complaint and that he should settle it first before leaving. The taxi then sped off. Good thing the traffic enforcer had a radio and told her colleague down the road to flag the taxi. We then walked towards where the driver was. We had a few exchanges and then I moved a few meters away since I was a bit scared that he might try to run over me. I then saw the driver offer money to the traffic enforcer. I then shouted out to the traffic enforcer, "Ano yan nilalagyan ka niya?" (What's that? He trying to bribe you?). The traffic enforcer then told the driver that they don't accept bribes and that I had a complaint about him. She then called her colleague who had the "ticket".

Better Living traffic enforcer J.V. Baticados then arrived and taxi driver's license and ticket in-hand asked me what happened. I was just starting to recount my story when the taxi driver flashed Baticados a "card" with a smile. Baticados then told me, "Wala ako nakikitang violation nitong taxi na ito." (I don't see any traffic violation). His tone totally changed when the driver flashed him the "card" (I only saw the back side). I then told the traffic enforcer what happened and then he asked me, "So ano lalagay nating violation?" (What violation do I put?). I then called up my Dad to ask what violation to place, he mentioned that essentially the driver was in violation of the taxi's franchise.

When I told this to the traffic enforcer his tone changed again and said that maybe we could just ask the driver to return the excess money and that we should just complain to LTFRB about the problem so that we won't be hassled anymore. I knew then that it was a dead-end for us so I agreed but said that I was really going to send a complaint. I said that he should just return 50 pesos. The driver then said, "Sus, 50 pesos lang pala, ito 100!" (So it's just 50 pesos, here's 100!).

The traffic enforcer then said that he would return the driver's license and let the driver go. I said okay since I wanted to go home already. The traffic enforcer then returned the license, but lo and behold, it wasn't the end of the horrible evening yet. I saw the driver get some cash from his shirt pocket, folded it and give it to the traffic enforcer. I then said, "Ano yan? Hindi ka dapat naglalagay! Umalis ka na!" (What's that? You shouldn't be bribing!).

The driver then tried to intimidate me by shouting at me, "Sino ka para paalisin ako?" (Who are you to tell me to leave).  I just replied that the traffic enforcer told him to leave already and that he shouldn't be bribing him. Baticados then told the driver to leave and said, "Hindi kami tumatanggap ng lagay noh! Kami dito sa Better Living tapat kami!" (We don't accept bribes. We here at Better Living are honest!). And while he was saying this he was putting whatever the driver gave him in his pocket. Driver left and Baticados immediately left as well.

We were left with the other female traffic enforcer who was then denying that the driver was trying to give her money. She assisted us to get on a tricycle. A few meters away I saw the taxi parked and the driver got off of the cab. I told Jay and Miguel to hide because I wasn't sure why the driver was there and I was scared that he might follow us home. Miguel said that he saw the motorcycle of Baticados parked near where the taxi was.

I've reported this incident to SM Mall of Asia's hotline number and also sent an email complaint to LTFRB (as suggested by someone I know who works for MMDA). I won't bother reporting to the DOTC hotline since I've reported so many incident there already and I never saw any action anyway. Oh, after doing some online research we found out that the taxi franchise PAFC Transport Coop is under the Philippine Army Finance Center. I tried calling their number too, but no one was answering.

Be safe my friends!

56 comments:

  1. Anonymous2:08 PM

    XXX at Tulfo na lang ang natitirang mabisang paraan

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  2. Anonymous3:07 PM

    tama. Better bring this up to the guys at media. XXX, Bitag and Imbestigator would be nice.

    Anyway, thanks for the tipoff.

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  3. Anonymous3:12 PM

    thanks for the heads up!

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  4. Anonymous3:16 PM

    correct XXX- kase may evidence ka eh.tapos marami ka pang malalaglag dyan- PAFC,yung taxi franchise plus yung traffice enforcer na nagpadala sa takot o kaba frm the connection.go!

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  5. galing MOA for that amount? That's ridiculous.

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  6. Anonymous3:33 PM

    TAMA!!

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  7. yeah that meter is totally rigged, i took a cab yesterday from cubao araneta to coastal mall i only paid 150 bucks..w/out traffice btw, tama isumbong mo nlng kay tulfo :)

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  8. Putang inang mga taxi driver to.......PAFC Philippine Army Finance Center kya naman pla mga enforcer eh natatakot sa kanila......Kung ganyan ang sistema natin dito sa pinas wlang mangyayari....P-NOY......

    TULFO mo or BITAG....patay yan.....ABUSADO!!!

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  9. Anonymous3:55 PM

    Hahay, Pilipinas..

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  10. Hay nako, grabe talaga manggipit ang taxi drivers ngayon. Last week lang umuwi kami from UDMC to Balic-Balic, Sampaloc 60 pesos na siningi l sa amin pero less than 3 minutes lan naman yung ride, ayaw lang kasi namin matagtag yung lola ko. Marami talagang madadayang taxi drivers at yung mga modus operandi nila, meron jan kunwari lalakasan yung rasdyo tapos biglang tataas yung metro, pag hindi mo naman napapansin biglang tataas ng mga 10 pesos.

    Buti na lang marami ng nagrereport sa LTFRB ngayon. Hindi lang naman sa mga taxi yan eh, pati na rin sa mga jeep. Kapag bill yung binigay mo, mas mahal ang isisingil sa'yo hindi pa ibibigay ang student's discount. Galit pa kapag nasita. Kaya, as much as possible, sakto lang yung binibigay ko. Yung mga humiingi pa at galit, bumababa na lang ako para iwas diskusyon. Good luck na lang sana hindi mo na maranasan uli yun!

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  11. Anonymous4:02 PM

    OH MY GOD. THIS IS SO FUCKING STUPID. GOSH. KAYA HINDI UMUUNLAD ANG PILIPINAS, EH. PUTA. I JUST WANNA SHOOT AND BANG THOSE STUPID ASSHOLES. U SHOULD'VE TAKEN A VIDEO OF IT! AND SHOW IT TO LIKE THE POLICE OR SOMETHING... Or like let your friends take a video hiding.

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  12. Hi Apple,

    found your blog through tumblr.

    matutuwa na sana ako sa mga traffic enforcers ng BLS pero wala pala ako dapat ikatuwa.

    maybe you should complain about the traffic enforces to the barangay.

    i hope you update us as to what happened sa complaint mo sa LTFRB.

    were you able to get the driver's name?

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  13. Anonymous4:16 PM

    just so glad you are fine... there are taxi drivers who are really like that... and police officers who you cant really run too

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  14. @Noisy Me I called up Paranaque City Hall's Traffic Management Group earlier and I'll be submitting a complaint within the week. They actually knew the traffic enforcer!

    @Anonymous I do have a video and have filed my complaint to LTFRB.

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  15. @Carina grabe talaga sila. Tayo rin naman nagtratrabaho para makabayad.

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  16. I once complained of a rigged taxi meter to get from Timog to SM North Edsa. But that was just 75 pesos (the usual is 60 pesos). But grabe yung na-experience niyo. There are good and honest drivers which I'm usually willing to tip. Then there are these horrible, horrible drivers.

    I think Jeric started a blog before about bad taxi drivers. If LTFRB and other channels don't work, maybe we should start a new system of checking w/c taxis are safe and not. :/

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  17. @George I always give a tip to honest taxi drivers. I've encountered a lot of bad ones though and I've reported most of it. I tried talking to the DOTC hotline person about collaborating on an online system. Kaso yun nga, called in reports nga don't get any action, what more ang online?

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  18. Anonymous4:48 PM

    I experienced it ung ibang taxi from BLS dadagdagan pa ung price kasi wala daw makukuhang pasahero dun sa destination mo minsan 60-80 pesos ung extrang sisingilin nila pero may makikita kang sasakay sa kanila! kaasar! grabe mandaya parang feeling ko tuloy puro manloloko nasa bansa natin! PEACE!!

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  19. @anonymous I always ride at SM Makati going home (kahit saan man ako nanggaleng) because they have a stand there for South-bound passengers. No reklamo pati where you are going but they usually ask for additional payment (no price though).

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  20. Thanks for sharing this. Ang tindi ng mga panlalamang ng Pilipino. Nakakahiya. Sana may mangyaring solusyon dito. Looking forward to updates.

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  21. Anonymous5:25 PM

    nakakahiya naman yung ginawa nila! grabe ha!

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  22. This better get to the higher officers.

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  23. Anonymous6:55 PM

    Thanks for sharing your story. That's very frustrating. Kaya hindi umuunlad ang Pilipinas dahil sa mga ganyang tao eh. Nakakainis!

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  24. Anonymous7:33 PM

    wag ka na lang mag taxi :)
    halos lahat ng nasakyan naming taxi e mandurugas at walang modo,,para silang mafia

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  25. @Anonymous well inasmuch as I don't want to take a cab I can't because I have a heart condition.

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  26. Anonymous8:35 PM

    @Anonymous

    si Tulfo naman OA eh, feeling pa masyado, at bukod pa dun napakalaking hipokrito tambayan nun sa Adonis eh

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  27. Anonymous9:01 PM

    For that amount you could have a trip across metro manila, i think. :| Gah.

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  28. Jilly9:23 PM

    You've already done the people good by posting this, but I think this should be reported to XXX or something, because others may not be able to read this blog or learn about this from word of mouth. I'm really glad you're a vigilante when it comes to "little" crimes committed by "everyday people". Thank you for the blog post! Be safe, the part about a driver bringing you to a motel...that's really scary.

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  29. Whats happening in this country?

    I always thought to myself that unless people on the upper hand (i.e. politicians, police, even the traffic enforcers) changes for the better, that's when the community will follow.

    We are close to becoming the next Congo. God help us.

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  30. @Jilly that happened over ten years ago when I was just a fresh grad. My work then required me to hop from one city to another and it happened when I had to travel from Manila to Pasay. He stopped when I started to spout off legal terms. He got scared. Back then there was no easy way to report taxi drivers.

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  31. Marami naman talaga loko-loko na taxi ngayon... Buti nlng safe kayo at hindi kayo sinalbahe nung driver. Kahit papano, may maipagpapasalamat pa rin. TC always.

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  32. Wow, it's a good thing you did that. That's a very smart move. I wonder if taxi drivers these days still do that, women really are so unsafe in this country.

    By the way, I thought of something. Your blog post made me think of it. I don't know, but there could be a website/webpage wherein people would post complaints about bad taxis, along with their plate nos. It would be hard to make, but at least people would be warned about them. I don't know much about web stuff but I'd be willing to help if that website will be made because I myself commute by taxi.

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  33. cheskeee10:24 PM

    I've been trying to convince myself not to leave our country because I thought people still believe and practice fairness. But this incident makes me think twice, I'm a college student and I'll be graduating in two years. I just don't want to waste all the years I've spent in school just for a country without justice. Please Pinoys, magbago na tayo! Yun naman ang talagang gusto natin diba? Oh, God.

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  34. @Cheskeee I never thought of leaving our country because I know I can make a difference. Stay here! =)

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  35. thank you for posting this! :)
    You should bring this to the media. Hindi na mababago ang sistema ng mga buwaya na yan kapag hindi sila na-expose.

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  36. i love your article and i can totally relate with what you wrote here.
    this is a normal occurrence for me since i often take the cab everywhere. but i admire your courage for calling out the driver on whats going on.

    am not taking cab drivers' side but there are still alot of honest & good taxi drivers out there, but how do we distinguish them?

    first - as much as possible get a cab from a reputable company such as mge, dollar, emp etc.. you're sure that their meters aren't rigged & if you get hassled by their drivers, its easier to call their offices to report their drivers.

    second - if you can't get those kinds of cabs, make sure to write down the name of the cab & plate number thats usually written on the door near the window. text it to as much people as possible. if you're destination is not a public place, make sure that someone is waiting for you outside.

    third - if its not written on the door, get off the cab and get another one. it's better to be safe than sorry. just pay the driver whatever amount's in the meter & call a reputable company. no amount of money is worth your life.

    i think the only way to regulate the problem with cabs here in manila, is the issuance of receipt. i dont know about some other parts of the country, but i've been in cebu & i really love taking cabs there. they are nice & friendly drivers, no rigged meter -- if you ride from one place to another today for P60, thats how much you'll pay tom.

    LTFRB, DOTC, MMDA & LTO should look into the problems with cabs & drivers right away before this gets out of hand.

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  37. Anonymous12:21 AM

    Next time, ask the driver to drop you at the nearest police station. When you get there, tell driver to wait for his payment and head to the OIC and file a complaint.

    Two things happen:
    1. plate number and license gets confiscated while case gets forwarded to concerned office.

    2. Driver will have to pay a very HEFTY bribe to officer to keep his license.

    Either way, it's a hassle for him and you won't have to pay anymore, just that you have to look for another cab.

    Worked every time for me.

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  38. Nakakaasar naman.. pinapacomplain pa kung saan saan. Isn't their job to handle the complaints and see to it that the taxi driver gets the punishment he deserves so that no one else would get cheated of their money? >:|
    Ang yabang pa nang taxi driver... 50php is A LOT to millions of Filipinos.

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  39. Anonymous12:29 AM

    Also, next time, try to wait for reliable cabs like MGE. I'm not saying they're perfect, but I only had one bad experience with them (driver was asking for additional tip for a short and easy trip). Most of the time, the drivers are courteous and won't say no to your destination (as long as it's within the metro).

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  40. Anonymous12:58 AM

    This is very funny for me because i think the warning for this kind of taxi service matter is exaggerated that it is presented like a dangerous matter. and c'mon you said BE SAFE? It's even SAFER or I'd rather pick to ride a taxi like this one than ride a taxi service who has a driver that is going to harass me. As you said the taxi was in perfect condition, an additional 50 wouldn't hurt but yes it is still wrong, maybe it is better if you just get off the cab earlier when you already felt that you are being robbed by its defective meter, you even made a big fuss about. I think you have just wasted your time. This kind of service is now rampant, they are called "Batingting", just know how to avoid one because this is a classic example of the cunning survival tactics of Filipinos given that earning a living is hard in the times that we live in. You can never banish it completely.

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  41. Anonymous1:25 AM

    some drivers should die early. they dnt deserve to live specially with stealing. :| hanap buhay na nga lang dadayain pa.

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  42. Anonymous8:06 AM

    Aileen, your experience is infuriating. We really need to fight back and take our country back from these corrupt people. At least we finally have a president who cares. P-Noy has a new web site where you can let him know your concerns. Maybe you can do a short write-up of your experience there and add a link to your web site for the complete story. We need to put a stop to all the wrongs and change our country. Take care.
    Gee

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  43. Anonymous8:28 AM

    i had the same experience, taxi din galing sa MOA. Ingat sa mga taxi sa MOA.

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  44. We've had too many experiences like this.
    I had a long list of taxi plate numbers and company names back then, but, unfortunately, my phone where I saved them gave up on me so I couldn't retrieve the list anymore.

    We decided to write or compile our complaints about taxi drivers on my blog - http://www.PinayReviewer.com - para talagang documented na rin.

    Dami talagang bwisit na taxi drivers sa mundo. We always tell them na di lang kayo ang naghihirap sa pagtatrabaho kaya wag kayong manloko. Buti nakakatulog kayo knowing na dinadaya nyo ang pasahero at yun pinapakain nyo sa pamilya nyo. Ayun, nagiguilty kaya some of them, they drop us off without asking for payments. Tsk tsk.

    LTFRB should really do something about these abusive taxi drivers and companies. We've gotten so complacent, especially our traffic enforcers and police, that these taxi companies think they can get away with fooling us.

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  45. wow. nakakainis ung driver and enforcers pero nakakatawa . yes dapat ka nga magcomplain and the people in charge should really do something serious about it and not just not care.
    really, corruption ang one of the things na kinaiinisan ko.
    well thanks for the story anyway::

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  46. Anonymous8:37 PM

    Fucking assholes.

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  47. Anonymous11:43 PM

    i had the same incident. from buendia to intramuros, usually the charge is 80. pero ung one time na nasakyan ko na taxi umabot ng 120?! habang nagd-drive ung driver napansin ko ung meter una 2.50 lng dagdag, pero ang bilis ng takbo ng metro, then biglang tumatalon ng 5pesos 10pesos. then nun pababa n ko, i just calmly said to the driver, manong, sira po ung metro nyo, 80 lng po inaabot dito. pacheck nyo po yan. then i gave 100. inisip ko kasi baka kelangan niya ng pera kaya gingawa niya yon. then i also said, God bless you manong. I tried my best to be calm and idaan sa init ng ulo ung nangyari. I just hope magbago na si manong.

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  48. Anonymous2:36 AM

    kalokohan!! from cavite nga going to EDSA Buendia 180 pesos lang eh... traffic pa yun! isumbong n yan kay tulfo!

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  49. Ang kapal naman! Nanghingi pa nakuha pang humingi ng dagdag? Isa pa yung traffic enforcer! Honest pala ah. Isumbong mo kay Tulfo! Amp!

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  50. Dapat bigyan din ng pansin ang mga traffic enforcers na wala na yatang sariling respeto sa sarili na maski P10 papatulan makaraket lng. ANg mga bulok na itlog na yan di na dapat nagkaktrabaho.

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  51. hay pinas kong mahal

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  52. grabe naman to nangyaring to, dapat sa mga taong ganito tinuturuan ng leksyon mga salot ng lipunan mga tao na puro personal na interest lang ang iniisip di bale ng kumita sa maling paraan basta lang mag ka pera. hindi dahilan ang wlang pinag aralan o kulang sa edukasyon para maging masamang tao. dapat gumawa sila ng mabuti sa kapwa nila para mas makatanggap sila ng grsya na dyos. at para na man sa mga pulis sana naman sa pag gawa ng tapat ay mapatunayan nman nila n karapdat silang algad ng batas hindi yung sila pa ang sumusuway sa batas .. marami ding ganyan sa las pinas mga bayaran at ang kakapal ng mukha. turuan na yan ng leksyon habang maaga! babawi tayo!

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  53. Anonymous8:41 PM

    my dad's a taxi operator.. lahat po ng unit namin,may telephone number sa gilid ng door.. if ever nangyari po ulit yung ganito sa inyo.. try to look for that phone number and the name of the taxi. About naman po dun sa nagpapalagay.. my sister was a victim. Pinagbayad sya ng mag 2000 ata for a violation about one way road ata.. Pina-blotter ng dad namin yung officer na yun, I think the officer was suspended or something like that.Ganun na lang din gawin nyo dun sa officer, since alam nyo naman yung name. :)

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  54. Anonymous1:05 AM

    based from experience, natatanggal ang angas pag may video na kasama. one of the great things with technology is that it allows us to be citizen journalists.

    Hope these bastards get caught.

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  55. Just read ur post. Grabeh! kakatakot talaga ang ganito. Masyado mga taxi driver dito sa Manila, lalo na yung mga airport taxi-MGA MUKHANG PERA. Ang nakakainis pa nyan pag nireport mo walang namang aksiyon na ginagawa basta malagyan ng lagay yung mga traffic enforcer ang sasalbahe din. Tuloy yung case mo nagiging hopeless case na lang talaga.. Siraulo yang driver na yan dapat dyan kinakastigo talaga! Thanks for the heads up!!!

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    Replies
    1. Anonymous12:29 PM

      Hi Aileen,

      I also had a bad experience lately with PAFC Transport Taxi last month. Yung hayup na taxi driver eh kung saan saan kami gusto idaan even I have instructed him to stay at EDSA going Greenhills. Then he was arguing and yelling at us. My wife and my 2 year old son were both frightened by his actions. Sobrang galit ko at gusto ko nang nakipagbuno pero pinigil ko ang sarili ko dahil kasama ko ang asawa't anak ko. I was calling the PAFC hotline up to this date to file a complaint but up to now walang sumasagot ng number na nasa receipt. At tama ka nung sinabi mong walang nangyayari sa complaint sa LTFRB. I am just wondering if may nakuhang number na pwedeng tawagan para maireklamo itong hayup na driver na ito. I can't let this pass. Kindly email me at benjoe_darlucio@yahoo.com. Thank you so much.

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