Lawyer killed, 4 hurt in 8-vehicle smashup
A lawyer was killed while his son was injured in an eight-vehicle smashup in barangay Jagobiao, Mandaue City, yesterday afternoon.
Police identified the fatality as Rogelio Yaun, 68, a native of Medellin town, northern Cebu. Yaun’s son Francis Gerard, 28, was injured. The lawyer was declared dead when he and his son were brought to the Mandaue City Hospital.
Three others were wounded in the accident, which happened past 4 p.m. on H. Abellana Street.
Police said the accident happened when the brakes of a 10-wheeler trailer truck carrying a backhoe bucket malfunctioned. The vehicles involved in the accident were all traveling in the same direction.
The accident snarled traffic for one hour.
The trailer truck was driven by Victorino Bitoon, 39, a resident of barangay Basak, Compostela town, and a worker of the Yuson Construction based in barangay Jubay, Liloan town.
Bitoon claimed that the brakes malfunctioned while he was negotiating a downhill portion of the road.
The trailer first hit a multicab with plate number YCA-318 driven by Gilbert Baliguat, 30, a resident of Consolacion town.
With the brakes malfunctioning, the trailer continued moving and hit more vehicles, said police.
After hitting Baliguat’s multicab, the back portion of the trailer swerved and hit a passenger jeepney (GXC-693) driven by Luis Esconde.
As the trailer continued to move, it hit the multicab driven by Yaun. The impact caused Yaun’s vehicle to hit a passenger jeepney (GCL-674) driven by Daniel Rekelmi, 53.
About six meters from where Yaun’s multicab was hit, the trailer truck hit a Canter pickup truck (KEX 976) driven by Alex Mediana, 25, with two other passengers.
After it was hit, the Canter pickup truck hit a private car (CNW-269) driven by Jonathan Quiambao.
Quimbao’s car then hit a vehicle (GJZ-640) driven by Roel Tabuclin .
The trailer stopped about 200 meters from where it hit the multicab driven by Baliguat.
Bitoon said he managed to stop the trailer truck by shifting to lower gears.
Other persons injured were Baliguat’s passengers Ludelyn Sotto, 32, and her 3-year-old daughter Sara Jane from Consolacion town. They were rushed to the Mandaue District Hospital then transferred to them Don Vicente Sotto Medical Center in Cebu City.
Mediana and his two passengers immediately got off their vehicle after seeing gasoline spilling from the vehicle driven by Yaun.
“We were all scared that the vehicle would explode,” said Mediana.
PO2 Ruben Cerdeña, traffic investigator, said they would investigate Bitoon’s claims that the trailer truck’s brakes malfunctioned.
Charges of reckless imprudence resulting to homicide and damage to properties will be filed against Bitoon, who was detained in Basak police station. /WITH REPORTS FROM CORRESPONDENT NORMAN V. MENDOZA
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