Families of bus crash fatalities to get P75K each – LTFRB
MANILA, Philippines — The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) said victims from the accident involving a Don Mariano passenger bus that fell off the Skyway elevated toll road in Southern Metro Manila on Monday would receive compensation under the Board’s so-called passenger insurance program.
The police reported that at least 18 were killed and 16 others were injured, including the bus driver now in “critical condition.” The families of the dead passengers should get P75,000 each under the insurance program while the injured should get P15,000 each, the LTFRB said.
The UCPB Insurance will provide the compensation for the Skyway bus accident, according to the LTFRB. Medical expenses exceeding P15,000 should be shouldered by Don Mariano, whose 78-unit bus fleet was ordered suspended by the regulator for at least 30 days, the LTFRB added.
The announcement comes as LTFRB and other agencies have launched an investigation into Don Mariano, which has been involved in other accidents, over this morning’s accident.
LTFRB chair Winston Ginez said in an interview that all seven franchises of Don Mariano Transit Corp. covering 78 bus units have been suspended.
The suspension order is being served, as of this posting, at 3 p.m. Monday.
The investigation, meanwhile, will focus on the road worthiness of the bus units as well as the competence of its employees, according to Ginez. This would include drug tests for all its drivers, according to Ginez.
“We will then set a case for hearing sometime next year for determination of the main decision against Don Mariano,” Ginez said, adding that previous accidents involving the bus company “will be taken into account.”
The steepest penalty LTFRB can impose is revocation of the company’s licenses, meaning it will no longer be allowed operate.
This was the latest in a string of accidents involving buses of the same company over the last two years.
In May 19, 2012, a call center agent was stabbed inside the bus travelling to Quezon City. This was followed by a July 5 accident that same year on the Edsa Ortigas flyover, which resulted in multiple injuries. On August 5, 2012, the company’s again figured in an accident on the Northbound Magallanes flyover resulting in the death of a motorcycle driver and injuries to the back rider.
Preventive suspension for 21 units on Sept 6, 2012 was lifted just last April, LTFRB said.
The Don Mariano Transit topped a “most dangerous” list issued by LTFRB in 2011 in terms of damage the company had caused to property.