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12 hurt as jeepney crashes into cars, garage in Antipolo’s ‘killer highway’

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MANILA, Philippines – Twelve people were hurt when a driver lost control of his passenger jeepney Sunday near the infamous Antipolo “killer highway” where eight teenagers were killed by a wayward cargo truck six months ago.

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The Quezon City-bound vehicle driven by Florencio Villareal, 37, of Antipolo City, collided with two cars as it was going down the steep and curving portion of the Sumulong Highway in Barangay Mambugan in Antipolo City.

“Exactly where? Where many children died last year, remember?” Joey Marco, head of the rescue unit of the Antipolo city government, told the Inquirer over the phone.

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The accident brought back to memory the incident three days before Christmas Day last year when an 18-wheeler cargo truck went out of control and plowed into a parked jeepney and several houses in Barangay (village) Mambugan. Eight people, most of them were teenagers playing billiards at that time, died on the spot.

“Thank God, no one died today (Sunday). Those who were hurt only sustained minor injuries and fractures,” Marco said.

The victims were identified as Hanna Allones, 39; Brigetta Dapitan, 39; Ian Paul Patricio, 20; Queenie Reillo, 21; Frances Estipona, 21; Andrew Relos, 23; Hazel Asuncion, 20; Ronald Sermina, 22; Vivian Regular, 53; Danica Asuncion, 19; Gil Briones, 39; and Dessylene Quezada, 21.

They were all rushed to the Amang Rodriguez Medical Center for treatment.

Driver Villareal, on the other hand, was detained at the Antipolo police station while the police prepared for the filing of charges against him.

He told the authorities that he lost control of his vehicle when its brakes failed.

Marco said the jeepney careened off the opposite side of the highway and rammed the approaching two cars before crashing into a garage of a house.

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“It’s the driver’s fault not the road. But I’ll still bring this case up at the meeting of [the city’s department heads] on Monday,” Marco said.

He said the city government would request the Department of Public Works and Highways to construct a concrete barrier in accident-prone areas to protect residents from “delinquent drivers.”

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TAGS: Antipolo, News, Regions, Sumulong Highway, traffic accidents
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