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Wednesday, September 18, 2019

3 children still missing 10 days after boat capsized

THREE kids who disappeared after a motor banca capsized in the seawaters off San Francisco, Camotes Island more than a week ago remained missing as of Friday.

It has been 10 days since MB Habagat Romeo sank but Carel Palomar, 9; Andie de Leon, 2; and Kiven Gonzaga, 4 have yet to be found.

The three children were among the 34 passengers and crew who were on the motor banca when it capsized in Tulang Point last Feb. 6.

Ensign Ronnie Eras, Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) Cebu deputy commander, said that due to frequent weather disturbances, they have suspended indefinitely the search for the three children.

Search and retrieval operations in nearby areas also went in vain, Eras said.

Due to the incident, the PCG issued an enforcement inspection apprehension report (EIAR) to Rene Misa, operator of MB Habagat Romeo.

Violations

The EIAR is a document issued by PCG’s Vessel Safety Enforcement Inspection Team to boat operators and skippers who violated maritime safety laws, rules and regulations.

Based on the EIAR, Misa and Romar Hermosilla, who was the boat’s skipper, committed four violations including the failure to secure clearance from PCG before departure. They also failed to register the motorbanca as a passenger vessel.

Eras said they gave Misa and Hermosilla at least 10 days to reply to the EIAR.

Eras said they did not detain Misa and Hermosilla since the survivors did not file charges against them.

The two will appear before an adjudication hearing presided by PCG Cebu commander Jerome Cayabyab.

If found guilty, the two men could face penalties up to P10,000. (JKV)
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