Stranded vessel carrying 118 passengers docks in Cebu-A A +A
Monday, August 4, 2014
ABOUT 118 passengers and some 60 crew were stranded for almost eight hours after a passenger vessel tilted and encountered engine problem.
Super Shuttle Roro 3 left Cagayan de Oro at 8 p.m. last Sunday and was supposed to arrive at 8 a.m. yesterday.
The engine reportedly stopped as the vessel passed Balicasag Island in Bohol at dawn yesterday. The constant pounding of big waves also caused the vessel to tilt.
According to Cebu Coast Guard (CG) Commander Rodulfo Villajuan, the CG in Tagbilaran,
Bohol quickly checked on the passengers.
Villajuan said the Bohol CG was about to transfer the passengers when the crew announced that they were able to fix the engine.
The vessel went on its way around 10 a.m. It finally docked at Pier 8 in Mandaue City around 4 p.m.
Villajuan said they are still waiting for the marine protest but he said the problem had something to do with the engine’s lubrication oil.
He said they received a call from passenger Felix Poloyacoy who told them their predicament.
Villajuan said they then informed their counterpart in Bohol.
He said the vessel only tilted about five degrees, correcting earlier reports that it was tilting 30 degrees.
“Hindi 30 degrees kasi kung nangyari yan, nahulog na yung mga pasahero (Had that happened, the passengers would have fallen into the water),” he said.
No one was hurt during the incident.
Felix Bradilla, a 58-year-old seaman from Davao City, said they were stranded in the sea for about 10 hours.
He said no one from the crew explained the situation when the vessel stopped around 1 a.m. But no panic occurred, he said.
Based on his experience as a seaman, Bradilla said 10 hours was too long for ship officials to fix the problem.
Bradilla travelled to Cebu to get medical certificates needed for his employment.
Calm but nervous
Although the passengers stayed calm, some couldn’t help but be nervous.
“Nahadlok ko uy. Mao na lang akong namathan nga wala na mag-andar ang barko unya nagtakilid (I was afraid. I woke up and noticed that the ship was no longer moving and was tilting),” said Maxima Corre, 65.
Corre, who was traveling alone, came from Surigao and was bound for Alicia, Bohol, her hometown.
The housewife said the vessel had been tilting on its left side since it left the port in Cagayan de Oro.
She said the crew provided the passengers with breakfast and lunch, but they had to buy their own water.
Security guards did not allow reporters and cameramen to enter the pier.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on August 05, 2014.