A really bad news from the boondocks. Let’s hope authorities will be able to rescue these trapped miners. Meanwhile, our condolences to the families of those who, because of Typhoon Nina, died in unrelated separate incidents.
At least five people were killed as Typhoon “Nina” ripped through Northern Luzon on Sunday and Monday, reports from the Office of Civil Defense in the Cordillera and the Ilocos showed on Tuesday.
In Baguio City, three people were killed in separate incidents when landslides swamped their houses.
Landslides also trapped 13 miners at a 60-year-old underground exit portal of mining firm Benguet Corp.
The miners were trapped by water that filled the tunnels between 4 a.m. and 5 a.m. on Tuesday. The waters are as deep as 300 feet beneath Purok 7 of a subvillage that used to be called Gold Field in Benguet.
Hopes are high that the miners will be rescued.
Reports from the Cordillera Office of Civil Defense said Lolita Baroma, 76, and Juan Baroma were killed when a landslide buried their house in Guisad Surong at past 4 p.m. on Monday. Lielany Fetcha, 38, died when another landslide covered her house at Dominican Extension.
At least 19 others were reported hurt in La Trinidad and Itogon towns in Benguet and in Baguio City due to landslides and floods.
In the Ilocos, OCD reports said Rodolfo Villanueva, 27, of Barangay Bucayab in Bauang, La Union, was electrocuted on Monday at the height of the typhoon.
Censio Culapit, 40, a resident of Quirino, Ilocos Sur, drowned in the Abra River also on Monday.
The three fishermen reported missing in Ilocos Sur and La Union were rescued by their fellow fishermen on Monday.
The OCD said the motorized fishing boat of Sonny Darang, 32, and Jeffrey Graychochea, 28, both of Barangay Bia-o in Sta. Cruz, Ilocos Sur, ran out of fuel while they were at sea. Fishermen found them in waters off Apatot village in San Esteban town on Monday afternoon.
Fishermen found Carlos Quello, 46, in the waters off Caba, La Union, also on Monday.
The Cordillera OCD report said the following roads were closed to traffic on Tuesday due to road cuts and landslides along its sections: Acop-Kapangan-Kibungan-Bakun, Benguet-Nueva Vizcaya, Tawang and Alapang roads in Benguet; Balbalan-Pinukpuk and Kalinga-Abra roads in Kalinga; Abra-Cervantes and Abra-Kalinga roads in Abra.
In Cagayan Valley, officials of the island town of Calayan in Cagayan said the typhoon destroyed at least P25-million worth of property in the town.
Calayan Mayor Joseph Llopis said at least 125 hectares of rice and corn farms were destroyed by heavy rains.
Llopis said the typhoon also damaged three bridges and 16 school buildings and toppled 37 electric posts in the town.
Update: Sunstar Baguio reports that there are 14 people trapped in the mine and lists them as follows: Gilbert Nattem of Banaue, Ifugao; Rudy Boling of Bangaan, Ifugao; Garry Ganu, Joel Bulga, Jeyson Himmayod, Rudy Himmayod, Jojo Himmayod, Juan Himmayod, Marvin Himmayod, Vincent Himmayod, all of Quirino Province; Joseph Anayasan, Mario Annayasan of Bauko, Mt. Province; Gerry Monyobda of Ifugao and Robert Buway of Itogon.
These names were based from a logbook that miners’ sign when they enter the mine site. More from Sunstar: Rescue teams are having a difficult time extracting the trapped pocket miners because of the strong current where the makeshift mine is located and strong smell of poisonous gas.
The landslide at sitio Tuge and Vida in Barangay Loacan was said to have triggered the collapse of the wall along the diversion tunnel of the mine site, causing the buildup of water.
Teams from the Philex Mines and Benguet Corporation, as well as rescue groups from Baguio City also joined the rescue efforts. The SN Aboitiz Power, which runs the Binga Power Plant, also sent a team and equipment to the site for assistance.