Capitol to extend aid to collision survivors-A A +A
Tuesday, August 20, 2013
GOVERNOR Alfredo Marañon, Jr. said Monday that the Provincial Government will extend assistance to the Negrense survivors of the collision of two ships in Cebu Friday evening.
Marañon said he will ask the Provincial Social Worker and Development Office personnel to locate the Negrenses who had survived the sea tragedy. He said the oil spill from M/V St. Thomas Aquinas of 2GO -- that sank after it collided with a cargo vessel, the Sulpicio Express Siete, at the Mactan Channel off Lawis Ledge, just 3.2 kilometers from Cebu Port -- would no longer reach the Negros seas.
The survivors from Negros were identified as 2Go personnel Captain Reynan Bermejo, apprentice Rayzan Guay, and housekeeping and food and beverage personnel Joey Albert de la Cruz Villa, Edwin Demogina Biona, Ronel Tedar Verangel and Ke Angelie Sanchez Grijaldo of Negros Occidental, and Roy Lumavad Castil, of Negros Oriental.
Avoid a repeat
Meanwhile, Sen. Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III, in a statement said, the collision between the M/V Sulpicio Express Siete Ship of Philippine Span Asia Carrier, Corp. (formerly Sulpicio Lines) and the 2GO cargo passenger ship, M/V St. Thomas Aquinas, took more than 50 lives and injured scores of passengers is a most unfortunate accident.
Pimentel said he was told that the Lawis Ledge, a narrow and treacherous strait where it occurred had been the scene of a number of earlier minor sea transport mishaps.
He added that aside from the probable need to check on the capabilities of the ship captains involved, the government agencies like Marina and the Coast Guard must adopt measures to ensure that such an incident does not happen again.
“There should be a way to warn ships, ferries and other vessels passing through the area to slow down and take the necessary precautions so that vessel smash-ups are avoided,” the senator said.
Subject to the better judgment of Marina authorities or of the Coast Guard, the installation of floating warning devices in the area may be done if the putting up of lighthouses proves impractical to ensure navigational safety, he added.
We should investigate and punish too if justified to avoid a repeat, the senator said.
Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on August 20, 2013.