LTO 7 suspends Danao City-based driving school, instructor for violating rules on TDC issuance

THE Land Transportation Office in Central Visayas (LTO 7) has suspended a Danao City-driving school and one of its instructors after it was found to have allegedly issued Theoretical Driving Certificates (TDCs) without subjecting their clients to the required training.

In a statement sent to SunStar Cebu on Monday, January 9, 2023, LTO 7 Director Victor Emmanuel Caindec said he has issued a suspension order against NC Tiger Driving School and one of its instructors, Luchen Tero, for violating on the issuance of TDCs under LTO Memorandum Circular (MC) 2021-2284.

LTO MC 2021-2284 states the rules and regulations on the accreditation, supervision, and control of driving institutions, and the standardization of driver’s education.

A resolution was issued based on the investigation conducted by LTO 7 Regional Accreditation Committee (RAC) and approved by Caindec, after receiving a complaint in September 2022.

Caindec tasked the LTO 7 RAC and its legal division head, lawyer Vincent Francis Bien Santiago, to thoroughly investigate complaints made directly to the regional director via his social media account, by several individuals who felt short-changed by driving schools that don’t conduct the required eight-hour/day theoretical training for TDC certificates, a requirement of LTO for the issuance of a student permit.

After Caindec signed the order, the suspension order was issued to the driving school on January 6.

Penalties

The order penalizes NC Tiger Driving School Danao City Branch with a P10,000 fine and a suspension of accreditation for three months.

Aside from the driving school, Tero will also be penalized with a fine of P10,000 and suspension of accreditation for six months.

Investigation

Based on the investigation, the driving school conducted morning and afternoon sessions for 40 students per session of TDC applicants.

Following the actual site/ocular visit of the Monitoring Committee members at NC Tiger Driving School Danao Branch, it has been concluded that their two classrooms can only accommodate a minimum of 27 and 24 students per instructor per session per day, which violates the classroom requirement stated under section 10-B of LTO MC-2021-2284.

Under the said circular driving schools can only "conduct the minimum 15-hour TDC in three days, one session per day."

Region-wide audits

Following the incident, Caindec has directed LTO 7's RAC, Operations Division, and Legal to conduct region-wide audits and expand its investigation on reports of rampant “no-test, same-day certification issuance” schemes by accredited driving schools or simply known by the public as issuance of "no show" certificates.

The order also covers capacity and compliance audits of accredited medical clinics and accredited dealers across Central Visayas.

Caindec also revealed that several show-cause orders are being prepared based on initial findings, covering several other driving schools.

Caindec said the move to ensure proper compliance by accredited entities, is in line with the thrust of the Department of Transportation for improved governance, under the leadership of Secretary Jaime Bautista and with direction and guidance from LTO Assistant Secretary Jose Arturo Tugade. (JKV, PR)