7 killed in Toledo bus crash

Posted on October 28, 2012

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A bus slammed a concrete fence in Toledo city last night killing at least seven passengers and wounding more than 20 others.

The Jegans bus was on its way to Toledo and turning a curve when it hit the fence near a chapel and the Don Andres Soriano High School before falling on its side.

A radio dySS report said witnesses described the 60-person capacity bus as overloaded with passengers standing in the corridor.

Heavy commuter traffic is expected to build up as families head to hometowns in the province for the long weekend and cemetery visits for All Souls’ Day and All Saints’ Day.

Pinamungahan Mayor Geraldine Yapha, whose family owns the Jegans bus line, said she would go to the hospital immediately to check on passengers and offer help.

The accident took place on Don Andres Soriano Street near the same spot where a Corominas-owned VJ & A bus sped downhill and slammed a concrete fence, killing 15 passengers and wounding 65 others in July 4, 2010.

Donna Faye Loayon, who lives 30 meters from the site, said the area which has a blind curve was “accident prone”.

“Many road accidents have happened there – motorcycle crashes, trucks that overshoot the road. Many people have died,” she said.

Especially now with the days leading to All Souls’ Day and All Saints’ Day, she said local residents have come to see the area as more dangerous than usual.
“Hilan gyud daw na,” she said.

In the 2010 Toledo city road accident, the entire bus fleet of VJ & A owned by the Corominas family was grounded for a month pending inspection for roadworthiness by the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board.

All bus drivers were made to undergo a seminar and take drug tests. The bus in the mishap was also found to be overloaded.

A concrete perimeter fence was later built by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).

In last night’s accident, radio reports said the remains of three women and one man were brought to the Carmen Copper Hospital. Their names were not immediately avaiable. Three other bodies were brought to the Toledo City District Hospital.

At least 21 injured passengers were brought to the Carmen Copper Hospital for first aid treatment before they were transferred to hospitals in Cebu City.

Among them were Jose Canencia, Glenda Canencia, Giovanni Libres, Joel Piolo, Nimfa Barabat, Dante Lucing, Simfroso Canada, Nilmida Allando, Jordan Enriquez, Andrian Gomez, Artemio Pason, Alejandra Pason, John RJ Pason, Justin Pason Danilo Sipada, Joan Rocacorba, Ryan Sorita, Rudy Mapa, Crispin Nilyama, Rodrigo Barabat and Luciano Alcos.

Rescue workers from Naga and Toledo cities, as well as Atlas Mining and Development Corp. helped transport victims to the hospital. /Carmel Loise Matus, Correspondent with Chief of Reporters Doris Bongcac

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