Triple whammy for Ceres Liner

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Thursday, March 20, 2014


TWO weeks after a Ceres Liner passenger bus figured in an accident in Hinigaran, Negros Occidental that claimed the lives of five persons and injured 32 others, two more of its buses were involved in a road crash this week.

The reports on the two latest accidents came as the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) issued a 30-day preventive suspension to the operations of seven Ceres buses, including the one that figured in the Hinigaran accident last March 3. Read the related story.

On March 4, a Ceres bus collided with a white Nissan pick-up truck in San Enrique town in southern Negros, resulting to the injuries of three persons, including a priest, police said.

Those injured were identified as Rev. Fr. Ernesto Magillano, a chaplain at Helvetia Heights in Bacolod City, and his driver Eddie Gan.

Bus passenger John Neil Lindsay Dino, 17, also sustained injuries.

A report from San Enrique Municipal Station showed both the pick-up and the bus driven by Mamar Estrella collided head-on while they traversing the national highway of Sitio Asinan, Barangay Bagonawa.

Fr. Magillano and his driver were traveling from Sitio Guintubdan, Barangay Ara-al, La Carlota City, where they attended a birthday party.

Based on police investigation, Gan, who was believed to be under the influence of intoxicating liquor, lost control of the pick-up, swerved to the left, and hit the bus that was going south.

The police said the priest had injuries on the chest and the leg, while Gan also had a leg injury. Both are undergoing treatment at the Dr. Pablo O. Torre Memorial Hospital in Bacolod City.

Dino, who was treated at the La Carlota City District Hospital, is already in stable condition, police said.

Estrella was released after the investigation.

Past midnight Sunday, a Ceres bus hit a motorcycle in Barangay Lantad, Silay City, resulting to the death of driver Erwin Erabon, a shipping company employee, records of Silay City Police Station showed.

Erabon was pronounced dead at the Teresita L. Jalandoni Provincial Hospital in Silay City.

Vallacar Transit Inc. (VTI), owner and operator of Ceres Liner, said in a press statement it respects the 30-day preventive suspension order for the buses under Certificate of Public Convenience (CPC) Case No. 2008-0190. Read the related story.

In its order, the LTFRB directed the VTI management to comply and submit all the necessary documents to prove that it has complied with the requirements in the selection and supervision of its drivers within the 30-day preventive suspension.

The VTI management said they complied on March 17 in response to LTFRB’s show-cause order, directing them to explain in writing within 72 hours, the reason of the management not to suspend, cancel and/or revoked the CPC involved in the said accident.

Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on March 20, 2014.

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