Traffic on EDSA near the Kamuning Avenue flyover is heavy again on Tuesday after the long, 5-day holiday amid the visit of Pope Francis. Despite some roads being closed for motorcades during the papal visit, the holidays kept traffic light in the metropolis. (MNS photo)

Traffic on EDSA near the Kamuning Avenue flyover is heavy again on Tuesday after the long, 5-day holiday amid the visit of Pope Francis. Despite some roads being closed for motorcades during the papal visit, the holidays kept traffic light in the metropolis. (MNS photo)

MANILA (Mabuhay) – The Philippine National Police Highway Patrol Group (HPG) explained the absence of Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) traffic enforcers along certain parts of EDSA.

PNP-HPG chief Arnold Gunnacao said MMDA officer-in-charge Rey Arada has been cooperative in breaking down personnel deployment, but was not able to assign traffic constables on major choke points due to a misunderstanding that the HPG teams are to hold these areas alone.

“Very cooperative si Ginoong Rey Arada kaya lang wala pong available na tao noong hinihingan ko para sa choke points. At sabi nga, doon sa choke points, ang pagkaintindi ay Highway Patrol lang ang dapat na nandoon so hindi po nilagyan ng MMDA,” Gunnacao said.

The HPG started heading traffic control along EDSA last Monday, giving motorists a glimpse of smoothly-flowing traffic.

A sudden downpour, however, struck Metro Manila the following night, leaving thousands of commuters stranded in nightmarish traffic until the wee hours of morning.

The MMDA’s schedule is limited until 10 p.m., which left the the HPG to solely resolve the congestion along EDSA. Gunnacao complained of insufficient reinforcements from the traffic constables.

Gunnacao said the MMDA has started to deploy 190 personnel on the identified choke points today but they still need additional manpower to manage the country’s busiest thoroughfare.

The HPG chief has already appealed to other PNP units to assign the personnel that they could spare to EDSA.

The Special Action Force (SAF) sent in 20 members, which have already undergone seminars on traffic management yesterday.

HPG will conduct an assessment meeting with other concerned agencies tomorrow. (MNS)