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CAGAYAN DE ORO, Philippines – Search and rescue workers retrieved the bodies of six people buried in mud and rocks following a landslide that struck a mining village in Maco town, Davao de Oro, on Tuesday evening, February 6.
The provincial government reported that at least 46 people are missing and feared buried in the landslide in the village of Masara.
According to the provincial government, responders also accounted for at least 31 people who were injured as a result of the environmental disaster as of 2 pm on Wednesday, February 7.
The search and rescue operations in the area are ongoing as of posting time.
At least 758 families have evacuated and sought shelter in evacuation centers in Maco town, according to the provincial government.
Rescuers used their bare hands to dig through tons of mud and rocks to reach miners buried in the landslide at the Apex Mining Corporation in Maco.
The Maco Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction Office reported earlier that 11 miners, one critically injured, were pulled out from the mud and debris and rushed to a hospital in Tagum City.
Major General Allan Hambala, commander of the Army’s 10th Infantry Division, told Rappler that the landslide happened at the Apex Mining Company in Maco, burying two buses carrying workers in Zone 1, Barangay Masara in Maco town.
Hambala said soldiers were sent to the landslide site to help in the rescue and recovery efforts.
DXDC-Radio Mindanao Network, based in Davao City, reported that over 300 residents from Masara were evacuated to a school in Maco after the local government enforced a forced evacuation in barangays Masara, Elizalde, Tagbaros, and Panibasan.
Apex Mining Corporation issued a statement, saying the landslide occurred in the area where buses waited to ferry their workers at around 7:30 pm.
Apex Mining said they were still doing a headcount to determine if there are missing workers.
Mobile phone footage shared on Facebook showed rescuers using their bare hands to reach the miners after the landslide buried the buses. – Rappler.com