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CEBU CITY, Philippines – Two siblings – aged 7 and 9 – and a 26-year-old man were killed after after they were swept by flood when the footbridge they were standing on collapsed at the height of a heavy downpour before noon Friday, September 29, in Sitio Riverside Banawa, Barangay Guadalupe, this city.
The bodies of John Carlo Taran, 7, and Arturo Cabradilla, 26, were found around 4 pm. Rescuers found Taran’s body trapped on a column of a bridge in Katipunan, Barangay Labangon, while Cabradilla’s body was discovered in Happy Valley.
Cebu City Councilor Dave Tumulak, chairman of the city’s committee on public order and safety, told Rappler the two victims were found lifeless nearly 4 hours after they were swept by flood.
At 5:30 pm Friday, the body of John Carlo’s brother, Joross, 9, was found floating in the seawaters off the South Road Properties, Tumulak told Rappler in a text message.
Tumulak said there were conflicting reports on the names of fatalities, but he was able to confirm the identities of the siblings through their parents.
John Carlo, Joross, Cabradilla, and several others were standing on a footbridge to witness a neighbor who just caught a huge snake from the river. The group stood on one part of the footbridge when heavy rain started to pour. The wooden footbridge, however, collapsed, said Tumulak.
Among those swept by flood were:
- Taran’s father, Nestor
- Taran’s sibling Junino, 15
- Rene and Regie Remorosa
- Benjamin Singson, 17
- CJ Delatre 17
- James Crocolas, 28
- Urvil Lawas 15
Tumulak said the 8 escaped death after they managed to cling to the columns of houses built along the river.
The Cebu City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office and the Cebu City Police Office immediately sent personnel to conduct search and rescue operations.
Tumulak said they two were rushed to the Cebu City Medical Center, but they were declared dead on arrival. He said the bodies of the two victims bore injuries and fractures.
Following the incident, Tumulak said he would suggest to the Cebu City council to order the demolition of the houses along the river in Sitio Riverside to prevent similar incidents in the future. At least 4 families are living in the area.
The Cebu City government will extend financial assistance to the victims, Tumulak added. – Rappler.com