BAGUIO, Philippines (3rd UPDATE) – Fourteen elders from Balbalan were killed when the truck they were riding plunged into a 200-meter ravine at about 2:30 pm Tuesday, September 11, as they returned from the Poblacion to get their old age pensions.
As they were heading home to Dao-angan village, the engine of the truck broke down as it was on a downward slope. The truck was carrying about 50 people when it fell.
Eight of the passengers died instantly while 6 others died while being treated.
The names of the dead were: Victorino Banglagan; Soledad Dammay; Eliza Amoga; Rosario Badong Isabel Bagni; Agida Palangdao; Lolita Latawan; William Gamongan; Leota Maday; Angelina Benito; Benjamin Badong; Terresa Dulansi; Annie Baluga and Martin Canao.
The 26 injured passengers are as follows:
Arnel Banglagan, Laika Barbosa, Manuel Banguingan, Jennifer Esteban, Pedro Maday, Lolita Gullitis, Anna Bagwingan, Imelda Cuzon, Caridad Palicas, Irene Dammay, Agida Palangdao, Mercedez Kingbao, Joselyn Gannisi, Soccoro Naganag, Necita Daggay, Bartolome Balcanao, Patricio Maday, Mariano Palicas, Leonarda Dumaguing, Conchita Canao, Sonia Barbosa, Condordia Manadao, Francisco Gumaad, Jr, Edmund Duguit, and Nanette Gamongan.
The injured were brought to Kalinga Western District Hospital for immediate medication while the recovered dead bodies were brought to the Balbalan RHU. The family of the dead were given P10,000 for their funeral services, the DPWH Balbalan said.
In a statement, the Department of Social Welfare and Development "expressed deep sadness on the vehicular accident that claimed the lives of some our Social Pension Program beneficiaries."
All those who died had just claimed in the Poblacion the P500 monthly stipend for indigent senior citizens handed out by the DSWD.
“We are saddened by the news. It was an incident that nobody wanted. We condole with the families of the victims,” DSWD Secretary Virginia Orogo said.
“DSWD conducts the pay-out to older person beneficiaries in coordination with the Local Government Units (LGUs). Rest assured that we will review our current practice and find ways to make the cash pay-out process simpler and easier for the beneficiaries of our programs, especially for our indigent older person benefiting from the social pension,” Orogo added.
The DSWD Field Office - CAR is now coordinating with the Balbalan town officials for the funeral services to be provided to the victims. Burial assistance will also be given to the families. – Rappler.com