MANILA, Philippines—Four people died and eight others were wounded after a vintage bomb being dismantled by cops suddenly exploded in Taguig City Monday, National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) Chief Superintendent Alan Purisima said.
Investigation showed that around 3 p.m., three Explosive Ordinance Disposal operatives from Philippine National Police’s Special Action Force, identified as Police Officer 2 Elizalde Bisaya, PO2 Arnold Mayo and PO3 Jose Toralba, brought a vintage mortar shell to a welding shop along Daisy Street corner Sto. Nino, Purok 1 in Lower Bicutan, Taguig to diffuse it, Purisima said.
But being unsuccessful using a wrench, a worker from the shop used a welding machine that caused the explosion, he said.
Purisima said that Bisaya and shop owner Crisanto Daguio died on the spot, while Mayo, Toralba, along with a nearby bakery owner identified as Riza Romualdo were rushed to the Taguig-Pateros General Hospital after sustaining serious injuries.
Toralba and Romualdo, however, were declared dead on arrival by their attending physician, while Mayo, among those eight injuries was in a critical condition.
Philippine National Police chief, Director General Nicanor Bartolome has ordered a full-dress investigation to “determine the circumstances surrounding the accidental explosion.”
He has also ordered “an inventory of all unexploded ordnance in the custody of PNP units and to institute proper handling, storage, and disposal procedures for these vintage war materials to prevent similar incidents.”
The explosion comes just days after another blast rocked HV dela Costa St. in Salcedo Village, Makati City, on Monday. No one was hurt in the blast, but several glass windows in two buildings and the rear window of a car parked near the blast site were shattered.
Circumstances surrounding the explosion, the type of explosives, suspects and the motive have yet to be established by the police.