Bill seeks to create agency to oversee, regulate amusement parks

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Senator Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III on Monday called for the establishment of an Amusement Industry Safety Board that will oversee and regulate the operation of amusement parks.

In filing Senate Bill No. 3373, Pimentel cited the urgent need to protect the general public, especially the youth, who patronize amusement parks and to prevent accidents with the early identification of unsafe amusement rides.

Pimentel, chairman of the Committee on Games and Amusement, lamented that at present, there are no specific standards that ensure the safe operation and maintenance of the rides in amusement parks.

The senator pointed out that although local government units have the authority to issue permits for amusement parks to operate, they do not regulate these establishments to ensure that the rides comply with the highest safety standards.

According to Pimentel, the proposed Amusement Industry Safety Board  shall ensure the safe operation and maintenance of rides and devices, the safety of riders against direct and indirect hazards in amusement parks, and the protection not only of patrons of amusement parks but also of the amusement industry as a whole.

The Board shall also conduct training and issue accreditation to amusement safety inspectors; coordinate with LGUs to investigate accidents or injuries; review orders for summary closure or stoppage of unsafe amusement parks; and develop and conduct information dissemination campaigns and safety programs.

The Board shall adopt internationally recognized standards, recommendations, and set of procedures or guidelines to further ensure the quality and safety of amusement rides and devices.

The proposed legislation seeks to provide tax incentives on the importation of amusement ride devices, equipment, and machineries; penalties on illegal importation; and loan provisions for peryahan or mobile operators.

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