MARINA begins probe on Iloilo-Guimaras strait incident

Robie de Guzman   •   August 6, 2019   •   425

MANILA, Philippines – The Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) has begun its investigation into the capsizing of three ferries in the Iloilo-Guimaras strait in separate times on Saturday (August 3).

At least 28 people were killed while six others were reported missing in the incidents, based on the latest report from the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC).

MARINA said it has deployed its investigation/coordination team to the site to monitor the search and rescue operation and to provide assistance in the investigation process.

The agency also suspended operations of all passenger motor-bancas operating the Iloilo- Guimaras route, pending review and assessment of safety conditions of said vessels.

“MARINA continues to remind operators to ensure maritime safety at all times by observing the latest weather forecast, conducting proper risk assessment, and applying control measures, as needed” it said in a statement.

To cater to the sea transportation needs of passengers in the Iloilo-Guimaras route, MARINA has directed two Roll-on / Roll-off vessels to increase their schedule of voyage frequency in the said area.

The MARINA Regional Office VI in Iloilo City has created a help desk to coordinate with the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG), Philippine Ports Authority (PPA), the Local Government Unit (LGU) and other concerned agencies.

The PCG earlier said the capsizing of multiple boats on Saturday may have been due to sudden squall or violent winds.

Authorities recover two more bodies in Iloilo-Guimaras strait tragedy

Robie de Guzman   •   August 6, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Authorities on Tuesday recovered at least two more bodies amid ongoing search for the missing victims of the Iloilo-Guimaras strait tragedy, according to the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG).

Around 9 a.m., personnel from the PCG and the Philippine Air Force found a body of a man wearing black shorts and t-shirt.

A few hours later, authorities found another body of a male, this time wearing navy-blue shorts and yellow shirt, sporting a black wristwatch and a ring on one of his fingers.

The bodies were found in waters surrounding Dumanggas and Guimaras areas, the PCG said.    

According to PCG Lieutenant Junior Grade Charibel Pugong, the bodies are already bloated and in an advanced state of decomposition.

“Isang naging problema namin doon medyo nahirapan po tayo sa pagrecover kasi bigla pong lumakas ang ulan and then ang hangin tapos malaki po ang alon so nahirapan po tayo sa pagkuha ng cadaver,” Pugong said.

Authorities are still working to identify the bodies and verify whether these were among the victims of the maritime incident.

Last Saturday (August 3), three pump boats capsized in the waters off Iloilo and Guimaras due to a sudden squall or violent winds.

READ: MARINA begins probe on Iloilo-Guimaras strait incident

Authorities said an investigation into the incidents is underway. (with details from Lalaine Moreno)

Death toll in capsized Philippine boats rises to 31

Robie de Guzman   •   August 5, 2019

Responders recover bodies of the victims of the sea mishap | Courtesy: Guimaras MDDRMO

At least 31 people were killed after strong monsoon winds capsized three ferries in the southern Philippines, coast guard officials said on Sunday (August 4).

Still photographs from the local disaster agency and the Philippine Red Cross showed bodies being recovered during rescue operations over the weekend.

Three ferries capsized in separate incidents on Saturday (August 3), which was blamed on sudden squalls. Three people remain missing, officials said.

READ: Multiple deaths after 3 boats capsize off Guimaras strait

A strengthened monsoon brought by a brewing weather system near the Philippine waters has brought heavy rains in the country, the state weather bureau said, suspending schools in Manila on Friday (August 2) and Saturday. (REUTERS)

(Production: Peter Blaza)

Multiple deaths after 3 boats capsize off Guimaras strait

Marje Pelayo   •   August 3, 2019

Photos courtesy of Senator Richard Gordon

At least 12 individuals died when three motorized bancas capsized off the waters between Iloilo and Guimaras Island on Saturday (August 3), according to the Iloilo City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO).

Initial reports by the Regional Maritime Unit 6 (RMU-6) said strong winds and big waves due to the inclement weather caused the three sea vessels M/B Keziah, Chi-Chi and Jenny Vince to capsize.

They were bound for Guimaras Port from Parola, Iloilo.

The CDRRMO reported a total of 78 passengers on board the three vessels.

At least 47 passengers survived the incident, three of whom are in critical condition according to authorities.

Personnel of the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) and the 601st MARPSTA are ongoing with the search and rescue operations.

Members of the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) were also on ground to provide assistance to the victims especially in transporting those who need emergency medical attention.

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