Hanjin bus crashes barrier, 21 hurt | SubicNewsLink

04 February 2009

Hanjin bus crashes barrier, 21 hurt

At least 21 workers at the Hanjin shipyard in Subic were hurt after their shuttle bus crashed a road barrier in Cawag, Subic, Zambales and fell down an embankment in the early morning rush to the worksite on Tuesday.

Miraculously, no one was killed in the accident — the first involving a shuttle bus ferrying workers to and from the shipyard, the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) said.

Police said the injured workers were brought to the San Marcelino District Hospital in Zambales.

However, four workers who were seriously hurt were subsequently transferred to St. Jude Hospital in Olongapo City for surgery, police added.

They were identified as Darwin Samabella, Joan Jade Guinto, Wilmer Fontillas, and Jaime Legaspina, employed at the Hanjin shipbuilding facility.

All the 21 injured came from Subic town, where they were picked up by the WPH shuttle bus.

WPH, which was contracted by Hanjin to ferry workers to and from the shipyard, operates a fleet of shuttle buses that picked up workers from various locations. The buses take the Cawag road that connects to the Zambales highway at Castillejos town.

Members of the SBMA fire and rescue team who were sent to the accident site said the bus fell down a relatively gentle slope and toppled sideways at the bottom of the embankment. However, no one was pinned by the vehicle, they added.

Initial investigation showed that the mishap occurred at about 6:50 a.m., when the WPH bus lost control while traversing a zigzag road in the Cawag area.

Police said the bus, which was carrying about 55 passengers, was racing with two other buses when the accident happened.

The bus driver, identified as Jerico Liego, survived the accident but reportedly fled the site before rescuers arrived.

Police said they are now coordinating with operators of the bus company to trace Liego and bring him in for investigation.

He will be charged with reckless imprudence resulting to multiple physical injuries, police added. (SBMA Corporate Communications)

PHOTO: The wayward WPH shuttle bus after it was brought out of the crash site.