The National Police would regain control of traffic in the country’s trunk roads, including roads in the seven provinces where the Ecuadorian Transit Commission (CTE) operates, according to the report for the first debate of the Organic Law of Land Transportation.
This package of reforms was prepared by the Occasional Commission that was formed to coordinate, evaluate and monitor compliance with the responsibilities of the Land Transport Advisory Council. For six months it processed 21 projects that change 60% of the current standard.
According to Luis Pachala (CREO), the text states that the police obtain full control of trunk roads and roadways in coordination with the CTE and municipal or district transit agencies.
On the other hand, the CTE, he adds, will be entrusted with the control of traffic at the level of the roads that correspond to the decentralized municipal autonomous governments that have not assumed that competence.
In article 13 of the project, the Police is incorporated through the Ministry of the Interior as part of the ground transport bodies and will have its delegate before the directory of the National Transit Agency (ANT); while the CTE will be part of that directory but only with voice and without vote.
This proposal is of concern to the CTE, says Martín Saquisela, head of the Legal Unit of that entity; this is because its mission is to control state and trunk roads, as provided for by the Traffic Law as well as the Code of Citizen Security Entities and the Comprehensive Criminal Organic Code.
Saquisela emphasizes that the CTE has more than 70 years of experience since they were the Transit Commission of Guayas. “It is intended to eliminate the Traffic Commission of Ecuador and that is not fair, in the two debates of the plenary session we will make feel that malaise,” he warns.
The CTE operates in Guayas, Santa Elena, Los Rios, El Oro, Azuay, Santo Domingo de los Tsáchilas and Manabí. According to Saquisela, the entity has not assumed the competences in other provinces for economic reasons. The uniformed ones that realize the control add 5,000.
Julio Barba, head of the Accidentology Unit of the Police, defended the recovery of traffic control, diminished since 2008 when the Traffic Law was reformed.
Despite reduction of powers, according to Barba, the police control 69% of the territory. According to the spokesperson, the institution will perform a comprehensive security task, because more than traffic control can perform tasks of verification and detention of people for other crimes.
The project proposes that public transport units have a kind of black box to measure speed, identify the driver and monitor the units when passengers turn on the panic buttons that should be placed.
More training will be required in driving schools that give licenses. (I)