MMDA traffic aides, sweepers get 'heat stroke breaks'

Posted at 04/03/14 5:03 PM

MANILA -- The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) on Thursday said it will again implement its "heat stroke break" policy for its traffic constables and street sweepers starting April 8.

According to MMDA Chairman Francis Tolentino, their outdoor personnel may take breaks from 1 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. to 3 p.m., which health and weather experts consider as the hottest periods during the day.

During these 30-minute breaks, they are allowed to leave their posts alternately to rest and get away from the sun.

At least one or two personnel should remain at their posts at any given time.

The MMDA said outdoor workers in the afternoon shift will be given free bottled water.

"Considering that our traffic constables and street sweepers work continuously under the scorching heat of the sun, we deemed it appropriate to re-implement this 'Heat Stroke Break Policy'," Tolentino said.

"We should try to understand the plight of these traffic constables and street sweepers who brave the heat everyday to fulfill their duties," he added.

The heat stroke breaks will be in effect until May 31.

State weather bureau PAGASA declared the official start of the summer season on March 26.

On March 28, the temperature in Metro Manila soared to 35.7 degrees Celsius, the hottest for the year.

PAGASA expects temperatures in the metropolis could go up to 37 degrees Celsius.

On 2012, an MMDA traffic constable died while on duty due to heat stroke.