On Feb. 5, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the Department of Health (DOH) issued a joint statement on face mask requirements in private vehicles.
“When the driver is with passenger/s, it is mandatory for all individuals inside the vehicle to properly wear a face mask, regardless if they are from the same household,” both agencies clarified in a joint statement.
The statement came in light of the public asking the government to reconsider this directive, saying that people who come from one household share a bubble. The DOH also clarified that people driving alone in their car may remove their face mask while inside the vehicle.
But until further notice, people caught without a face mask while driving with passengers, won’t be fined P2,000 and P5,000 for private and public vehicles respectively, as previously reported, the Land Transportation Office said.
Sen. Grace Poe has called this move “ludicrous and unrealistic” and asked the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging and Infectious Diseases (IATF) to reconsider.
“Wearing face mask[s] should be required in public transportation and carpooling, but not inside private vehicles carrying members of the same household,” said the senator.
The IATF and concerned parties have been summoned by Sen. Poe on Feb. 9 to fully explain the matter.