By Danny J. Estacio
Tagkawayan, Quezon — A passenger bus traveling from Manila to Bicol careened off the national highway in this town and plunged into a ravine, injuring the driver and nine of his passengers yesterday.
Police said Herbert Umali, driver of the Golden Dragon AB Liner bus, lost control of the wheel along the descending portion of Quirino Highway in Barangay Bagong Silang until the bus fell into the ravine off the road at 1:45 a.m.
The Tagkawayan Disaster Management Office’s rescue unit was helped by local police, radio groups, the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP), and the army’s 22nd Infantry Battalion (22IB) in rescuing the victims.
Apart from Umali, those injured were bus conductor Rommel Rosales and passengers Rica Antone, Salvacion Sto. Domingo, Milagros Antone, Lynlyn Oco, Ramon Lord Nerier, Angelo Sto Domingo, Joselito Sto. Domingo, Anaceta Aninion, and Jaymark Aninion.
Some of the victims were taken to the Maria Eleazar Memorial District Hospital in this town while others were rushed to the St. Peter General Hospital in Calauag town.
Probers vowed to determine the claim of a number of passengers that Umali had allegedly fallen asleep behind the wheel.