Tricycle is one of the most practical mode of transport in Sorsogon City, which goes with the other cities in the country.
In places where public transportation is scarce, a creative tricycle driver can squeeze in 9 passengers – 4 inside, 2 clinging in the side car, 2 at the back of the driver, and 1 more clinging behind the motorcycle! Normally, it should only carry 3 passengers on its side car and 2 more behind the driver.
In Sorsogon, the tricycle terminal is in Plaza Bonifacio, beside the Sts. Peter and Paul Cathedral and Graceland fastfood. In the old days, it was located between Footstep and China Bank (it was an open area before), just in front of the Sorsogon Wet Market (aka Plasa in local parlance). Then, they transferred to Calle Nueva.
Twenty years ago, it was very difficult to get a tricycle at 7pm going to Sts. Peter and Paul Ville Subdivision, let alone to OLV-Bibincahan, which is 1 km farther than the former. Nowadays, you can get a ride to the farthest point of Bibincahan even if you are the only passenger (additional 2 pesos or you pay for 2 passengers). You can even ask the tricycle driver to take to Bacon Beach; last time I did this, the driver charged me PHP100. I also pay PHP50 if I can’t wait for a jeepney going to Ticol area.
I was able to talk to one of my friends who is a tricycle driver in Sorsogon City. He told me that the city has the most no. of tricycles on the road compared to other places in the Bicol region. Apparently, Brgy. Bibincahan has the most number of tricycles amongst the drivers-operators association. In total, he thinks that there are 5,000 tricycles on the road of Sorsogon City.
One of the most interesting topic with the tricycle drivers is the illegal tricycle units – colorum, they call it. My friend estimates that there are around almost 2,000 colorum units actively picking up passengers in the city. And if you ask other tricycle drivers, they will give you almost the same figures, 1,500, 1,800, etc. And these drivers that I talked to blame the illegal tricycle units for the heavy traffic in Centro during rush hours.
I talked to several tricycle drivers and they are definite about the impact of these illegal units to their earnings, however, they are also resigned on the situation that nothing will happen. To make it worse, those driving the illegal tricycle units are also well known to those who do drive legal ones – sometimes they are neighbors and friends!