Gov't OKs use of backpack-like motorcycle barrier proposed by Angkas

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, July 13) — Couples who are planning to back ride or pillion ride on motorcycles have more options for the barriers, which is now a requirement to contain the spread of COVID-19. 

Interior Secretary Eduardo Año on Monday said the National Task Force for COVID-19 has approved the use of the backpack-like shield proposed by motorcycle taxi service Angkas.

The motorcycle driver will wear the straps on his shoulders. The plastic shield will separate him from his passenger. There are also handles on the passenger side.

Angkas proposed the use of plastic shields as a safety measure to convince the government to allow the company to resume operations. It even presented its design proposal to officials.

However, the government insisted that Angkas does not have a franchise to operate as the pilot program for motorcycle taxi services ended in April.

Angkas' design and the proposal of Gov. Arthur Yap are the two designs approved by the national government. All back-riding couples are required to use one of these in order to ply the roads.

Back riding is strictly for husbands and wives, common-law couples, and live-in partners only. They need to present IDs at checkpoints or to law enforcers as proof that they are a couple.

Aside from the shield, motorcycle-riding couples must wear their face masks and helmets.