In the case of Yellow Bus Line Employees Union (YBLEU) vs. Yellow Bus Line, Inc. (YBLI) [G.R. No. 190876, June 15, 2016], the Supreme Court held that Article 282 [now Article 297] of the Labor Code provides that one of the just causes for terminating an employment is the employee’s gross and habitual neglect of his duties.

Get an updated and re-numbered copy of the Labor Code of the Philippines 2018 Edition

This cause includes gross inefficiency, negligence and carelessness. Gross negligence connotes want or absence of or failure to exercise slight care or diligence, or the entire absence of care. It evinces a thoughtless disregard of consequences without exerting any effort to avoid them.

The drivers in said case drove the bus recklessly. On the part of Gardonia’s act of negligence which proximately caused the accident, he was dismissed by YBL on the ground of reckless imprudence resulting in homicide and damage to property.

On the part of Querol, he was driving recklessly despite the fact that bus assigned to him was newly repaired. YBL also conducted its ocular inspection of the area and found that there was no road crossing at the scene of the incident which contradicts Querol’s statement that a bicycle suddenly crossed the highway.

Moreover, it was revealed that the bus was found in the sugar plantation at a distance of 60 meters from the highway. This proved that the bus was running very fast. The accident is evidently caused by Querol. YBL submits that the amount of damages incurred by the bus totaled P84,446.59. Querol was validly terminated for violation of Company Rules and Regulations.

Indeed, Gardonia and Querol were both negligent in operating the bus causing death and damages to property.

The sample notice below for reckless driving of company vehicle is based on the book Human Resource Forms, Notices & Contracts Volume 2 by Atty. Villanueva (pp. 197-198). Get your copy here.

Form No. 105 Notice to Explain (First Notice)Reckless driving involving company vehicle

To : Name of Employee

From : Human Resources Manager or other authorized officer

Subject : Reckless driving involving company vehicle

Date : (Date of issuance of Notice)

The following incident has been brought to our attention:

That on _____________, you figured in a vehicular accident involving a company vehicle with plate number ____________ in ____________ (exact location of accident).

On another date, particularly on __________, you figured in another vehicular accident on board the same company vehicle in _____________ (exact location of accident).

On both occasions, traffic enforcers present at the scene of the incident and in their official traffic accident reports, stated their observation that you had consumed alcoholic drinks. Their reports also indicated your statement to them that you had come from parties where alcoholic drinks were served.

Despite your alcohol consumption at the time, you took the company vehicle and drove it at the time of the vehicular mishap. In this connection, company rules specifically prohibit reckless driving of company vehicle.

Repeated violations of said prohibition may constitute willful disobedience of a lawful order a just cause for termination under the Labor Code.

In view of the foregoing, you are hereby required to submit a written explanation to this office within five (5) days from receipt of this notice, stating why the Company should not impose the penalty of dismissal for the acts mentioned. Furthermore, you are invited to a conference on _________ (date) at ___________ (venue) where you shall be accorded the opportunity to express your side on the matter.

You may be accompanied by your own counsel at the said conference if you wish to be assisted by one. Your failure to submit your written explanation within the period provided shall be construed as a waiver of your right to be heard and the Company shall decide the matter on the basis of all records and evidence available to it.

Your compliance is strongly encouraged.

Very truly yours, ________________
(Name and signature of authorized signatory)

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