By Roy Mabasa
The Philippine Embassy in the United Kingdom is closely coordinating with authorities in Ireland concerning the case of a Filipino seafarer who died when a steel container dropped on him at Southbank Quay in Dublin on November 14.
Dennis Gomaz Regana was killed while doing lashing work as part of container lifting operations on his vessel, MV Francop, an Antigua and Barbuda-flagged containership.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Mr. Regana. The Embassy is coordinating closely with Outreach Ireland and with local authorities in Dublin regarding this unfortunate event,” Ambassador to London Antonio Lagdameo said in a statement.
Lagdameo tasked the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) of the Philippine Embassy to coordinate the appropriate response to the case of the Filipino seafarer.
“The Embassy will make sure that his family will receive the benefits stipulated in his employment contract as well as the benefits from his OWWA membership. We will also work with Ireland to ensure that this tragedy will not happen to any Filipino worker again,” the envoy added.
According to Welfare officer Connie Marquez, the deceased seafarer’s active Overseas Worker Welfare Administration membership ensures that Regana’s family will receive death benefits of P200,000, funeral grant of P20,000, scholarship grant for one of his children until he or she finishes college, and a startup capital of P15,000 to enable his family to start a small business.
At the same time, the Embassy is coordinating with Regana’s employers and recruitment agency to arrange for the immediate repatriation of his remains.
Ireland’s Health and Safety Authority is still conducting an investigation into the OFW’s case.