Gov’t ready to help victims of Cebu sea mishap: Palace-A A +A
Saturday, August 17, 2013
MANILA -- The government said it is ready to extend assistance to the victims of a sea mishap in Talisay City, Cebu, in addition to the help being extended by the shipping companies involved.
“Handa naman tayong magbigay ng kahit anong assistance na kailangan nila. As of the current situation, the management of 2Go Shipping Lines is providing relief assistance to them,” Deputy Presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said in a radio interview over dzRB on Saturday.
As of the moment, Valte said the shipping company has extended temporary shelters, hot meals, and medical assistance to the survivors. Other survivors are also being given accommodation while the situation is being sorted out, she added.
As of 2 p.m. Saturday, the death toll rose to 31 while 172 passengers are still missing, the Office of Civil Defense Visayas said.
Of the 832 passengers of M/V Saint Thomas Aquinas, which sank after the collision, 629 are survivors as of this posting Saturday.
Different concerned government agencies and search and rescue assets are working together as a response to the accident, Valte said.
Among the agencies involved in the search and rescue efforts include the Philippine Coast Guard, Bureau of Fire Protection, the AFP Search and Rescue Group, and the LGU disaster volunteers, she said.
The Department of Health and the All Terrain Medical and Relief Organization are also cooperating to lend their expertise, she added.
After the search and rescue as well as search and retrieval, the thrust will shift to determining the one accountable for the sea tragedy, Valte said.
“Magsi-shift na yan kasi since it is a maritime accident, it has to be determined kung sino ang at fault,” she said.
The accident happened Friday evening in Lewis Ledge in Talisay City, Cebu when MV Sulpicio Express 7 and the MV St. Thomas Aquinas 1 got into a collision. (PNA/Sunnex)