Mine firm asked to fix tunnels

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet -- Virac village is asking Benguet Corporation to rehabilitate mine tunnels.

Virac village chief Noel Bilibli, in a resolution, is enjoining the mine company to rehabilitate the old and new diversion tunnels at Ambalanga, Vegas at Balatoc, and the three new diversion tunnels at Batuang.

“It has been three months since the cave in -- sinkhole at Sitios Camanggaan and Batuang but still the damaged portion of the old diversion tunnel number 2 is not being rehabilitated,” Bilibli said.

Last year, a sudden collapse of a portion of a mountain slope, including a major portion of a local road, happened in sitio Camanggaan and Upper Batuang, Barangay Virac, causing displacement of residents.

“It is with high urgency to rehabilitate the old and new diversion tunnels at Ambalanga, Vegas at Balatoc and the three new diversion tunnels at Batuang in order to protect the communities from impending disaster,” Bilibli added.

The village chief said the unpredictable weather and the impending rainy season have forced the community to make the resolution.

Official report of the Mines and Geosciences Bureau concluded the subsidence was triggered by the abnormally high rainfall brought about by Typhoon Lando, recording 775.4 millimeter of rainfall for a single day equivalent for one month of rain.

The resolution is backed by the entire council of Itogon and has been forwarded to the Provincial Board for comment.

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