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Bontoc bus crash may have been caused by loose brakes—LTFRB chair

/ 03:46 PM February 08, 2014

This unit of the GV Florida Transport Inc fell off a ravine on the morning of Feb. 7, 2014, landing at a small farm in Barangay (village)Talubin, Bontoc town in Mt. Province. The bus came from Manila. The accident killed 14 people, including 2 foreigners and comedian Arvin “Tado” Jimenez whose remains were driven back to Manila on Saturday, Feb. 8, 2014. RICHARD BALONGLONG/Inquirer Northern Luzon

MANILA, Philippines – The bus that fell off a ravine in Bontoc, Mountain Province and killed 14 passengers may have had loose brakes, according to the preliminary investigation of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB).

In a phone interview with INQUIRER.net Saturday, LTFRB chair Winston Ginez quoted the conductor as saying the bus had loose brakes.

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The casket that will carry the body of comedian Arvin “Tado” Jimenez is being readied for the road trip that will take him back to Manila from Bontoc town in the Mountain province where he and 13 others died after the bus they were riding plunged into a 100-meter ravine. The hearse bringing Jimenez’s casket left Bontoc at 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 8, 2014 and is expected to be back in Manila Sunday, Feb. 9, 2014. RICHARD BALONGLONG/Inquirer Northern Luzon

The conductor was reported to have jumped out of the bus before it lost its brakes and fell off a 100-meter ravine early Friday morning.

“According to our preliminary investigation, the bus lost control due to loose brakes,” Ginez said in Filipino.

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The LTFRB has ordered a preventive suspension for 30 days on the 228 buses of G.V. Florida Transport after it was found out that the ill-fated bus was issued with a license plate that belonged to another bus to make it appear it could be used as a hired vehicle.

The board also found out that the bus was authorized under the name of Norberto Cue, who had not filed an approval for the sale and transfer to Florida Transport.

This means that the Florida Transport was not authorized to operate the bus, LTFRB said.

Among those killed were comedian Arvin “Tado” Jimenez, musician David Sicam, visual artist Gerard Baja, and 11 others. Meanwhile, 32 were injured including the driver and the conductor.

The crash came more than a month after a Don Mariano Transit bus fell off the Skyway near Bicutan crashed onto a van below. The accident killed 19, including the bus driver.
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TAGS: Accidents, Bontoc, brakes, bus, Crash, G.V. Florida Transport, LTFRB, Mountain Province, Road accidents, Tado Jimenez
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