Contractor faces probe on failure to report fatal construction accident
ILOILO CITY—A contractor on Boracay Island is facing investigation for failing to report a construction accident that left a worker dead and two others injured.
The Boracay Tourist Assistance Center (BTAC), the island’s police force, with the municipal engineering office of Malay in Aklan are also looking into the circumstances of Wednesday’s accident at the construction site in Sitio Hagdan in Barangay Yapac.
Senior Insp. Fidel Gentallan, BTAC chief, said they were only able to confirm the accident after more than six hours because the contractor, Datem Inc. did not inform the police about the incident.
“They should have reported it immediately. We could not enter the site because it was private property and the security guards denied the incident,” Gentallan told the INQUIRER.
The accident occurred at the construction site about 10:15 a.m., but police were only able to enter the site at 4:50 p.m.
Gentallan identified the lone fatality as Rene Dalis who died at 11:20 a.m. at the Boracay Island Clinic.
The two other victims, Rafael Masaglang and Jose Manuel Dilanco, were also brought to the clinic and later transferred for further treatment to the capital town of Kalibo in Aklan.
The victims were inspecting the basement excavation site when a five-meter high mound of excavated soil and rocks fell on them.
Gentallan said days of rain could have loosened the soil at the site in Sitio Hagdan, Barangay Yapak at the northern end of the 1,032-hectare island.
The BTAC initially received a report of the incident about 11:12 a.m. from municipal councilor Jupiter Gallenero.
But when policemen went to the area to verify the report, security guards at the site denied the accident, according to Gentallan.
Gallenero said he was also prevented by entering the site when he went there about 11 a.m.
Upon entering the site, they were accompanied by personnel of Datem Inc. construction company, the employers of the victims.
In a statement, Datem Inc. said the workers were conducting standard inspections when the soil eroded.
“It is unfortunate that we lost one of our workers. We are closely coordinating with the local authorities about this incident. The safety of our workers will always remain to be our top priority.”
However, the statement did not shed light on the failure of the contractor to report the incident to the police.
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