Mother is 2nd fatality in QC tree crash
MANILA, Philippines — A woman who was pinned down by a tree toppled by Typhoon “Lando’s” strong winds in Quezon City, died Sunday night, bringing to two the number of persons killed in the accident.
Barangay councilman Dennis An told the Philippine Daily Inquirer on Monday that 49-year-old Esperanza Palparan died while receiving treatment at the East Avenue Medical Center (EAMC) at around 6 p.m. Sunday. He added that the victim sustained injuries in the head and body, particularly in her pelvic area.
Palparan was the last of seven victims to be pulled out of the debris caused by the toppling of a towering ipil-ipil tree, which was uprooted and which then fell on three houses at the Bureau of Forestry Development Compound in Barangay Central shortly before noon Sunday. An said that it took responders close to four hours to pull Palparan out. He noted that they had to tear down three sections of the compound’s wall to allow trucks from the city’s department of public order and safety to enter.
In an interview on Monday, Palparan’s 16-year-old son Andrew said that her mother’s last words to him while she was still stuck in the debris were for him to “be a good boy.” The now orphaned Andrew recalled that it was only seconds after he went out of their house when the tree toppled, trapping his mother who was busy sewing clothes.
Apart from Palparan, also killed in the accident was 14-year-old Aaron Castillo who died while receiving treatment for the abdominal injuries he sustained when the tree crushed him in his sleep. Among the injured were Aaron’s father Ronnie, uncles Arnel and Larry, his 3-year-old cousin John Mark Matthew Castillo, and tenant Charito Talaman. All of them sustained bruises in the head and body.
Talaman, who managed to escape with only a cut on her head and bruise on her leg, earlier said she was watching news on Lando’s movement when the accident occurred. She added that she was thankful to those who helped her and couldn’t remember how exactly she got out of Ronnie’s house where she has been renting.
An said that the affected families have been staying at the barangay’s multipurpose hall, where Aaron and Palaparan’s wake will also be held.
As of Monday afternoon, personnel from the city’s parks development and administration department were still clearing the area of the felled tree. PDAD’s Alex Veneracion said that it might take them at least a week to totally remove the around 30-year-old tree. Portions of the tree will be turned over to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources. SFM
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