4 fishing boats sink in Bohol

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At least four fishing boats sank during the height of the typhoon in barangay Catarman, Dauis town, Bohol.

Every time a storm hits Bohol, fishing boats seek refuge in Catarman bay, but this time the four fishing boats were not able to withstand the big waves caused by the typhoon resulting in the sinking.

Domingo Miculob, 59, a local fisherman, said it was his first time to see big waves seven to 10 feet high on Dec. 4 when typhoon Pablo struck the province.

Antonio Pindang, 42, from Baclayon, was manning the M/V Lovely San Vicente 5 when big waves pounded their fishing boat around 4 p.m.

“Duha ra ka hapak sa bawod, nalunod na ang bangka. Sa unang hapak, nangalabay ang cover ug mga pultahan sa bangka. Pagkasunod, nasudlan na ug tubig mao nalunod ang bangka. Sa ikatulo, naanod na ko sa ilawom sa tubig. Maayo gani kay nakagunit pa ko sa lifejacket (Two big waves caused the vessel to sink. The first wave destroyed the cover and doors of M/V Lovely, the second wave sent the vessel under water. Luckily, I was able to grab a life jacket,” said Pindang, the boat captain.

Pindang said he instructed his three crew members not to anchor the boat so they would just float on the waves about 500 meters from the shore. But he said the waves were higher than their boat causing it to sink. Pindang said he immediately declared abandon ship after the second wave.

The crewmen swam ashore for an hour without a life jacket and survived. They only suffered bruises on the head and knees. Pindang was not injured.

Prior to the incident, Pindang said he was monitoring local AM station dyRD for typhoon updates when he heard Norberto “Jun” Mendez Jr., a radio commentator, saying that Pag-asa’s weather forecast was not accurate and the raising of the alarm level just sent hundreds of passengers to and from Cebu City into panic.

“Kung naa pa lang si Jun Mendez diri, ako jud siya pakit-on unsa diay ni ako gi-atubang, daku mani nga bawod unya nagsige siyag yawyaw sa radio nga walay bawod (If Jun Mendez were here, I would let him see the big waves to disprove his statement that there was no wave),” Pindang said.

Four other fishing vessels also sank that day. MV Asuncion 5, MV Asuncion 6 and MV Asuncion 9 sank at 5 p.m., while MV Maldita at 6 p.m.

Pindang said they are now recovering the engines and fish nets from the sunken boats. He pegged the total amount of damages at P7 million. /CONTRIBUTOR SHERWIN SAPONG

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