By Erma Edera
The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) will deploy additional survey equipment as part of the ongoing Manila Bay rehabilitation to ensure the occupational safety and health of its personnel following the discovery of a vintage bomb on the seabed.
DPWH Bureau of Equipment (BOE) Director Toribio Noel Ilao said they are now looking into adding more surveying instruments and services that can detect explosive materials on seabed.
“Presently, ground-penetrating radars which could sense the presence of metals, pipes, and spaces underground are available,” Ilao said.
On April 6, a vintage bomb was found by a member of the Manila Bay Task Force during a dredging operation at Manila Bay coastline near the United States Embassy.
“The water quality of Manila Bay is already hazardous and can be dangerous to our workers. The unearthed vintage bomb is on another level, hence we have to intensify our measures to further protect our hardworking crew,” DPWH Secretary Mark Villar said.
In addition, Ilao said that they conducted a safety briefing on all personnel working in the area.
The safety officers were reoriented on the standard procedure prescribed under DO 74, series of 2015, specifically on the provisions pertaining to discovery of suspected munition or explosives or operators to observe caution during excavation to avoid accidental detonation of explosives.
Presence of medics will also be ensured for emergencies while warning signs will be installed all over the project site to warn the public of possible danger, Ilao added.