By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
At least 15 people were injured after a fastcraft vessel slammed into the jetty at the Bredco port, Thursday afternoon.
Philippine Coast Guard-Bacolod station chief, Lieutenant Senior Grade Jimmy Oliver Vingno, said the ship, identified as Ocean Jet 7 originating from Iloilo City and captained by Henry Sakay of Mandaue City, Cebu, was maneuvering in order to disembark passengers and cargo.
However, Vingno said the ship’s throttle jammed, leaving the vessel unable to slow down, causing it to slam directly into the jetty.
The force of the impact jostled passengers on the vessel, while the ship’s bow was damaged.
Ocean Jet-Bacolod Supervisor Michael Uy said 14 of the 15 injured passengers were immediately brought to Bacolod Adventist Medical Center (BAMC) in Barangay Taculing, Bacolod City, with the transport company offering to pay for their medical treatment.
He added, overall injuries were not serious and those hospitalized were sent home by 9:00 p.m.
Meanwhile, Vingno said they barred Ocean Jet 7 from leaving port, unless the company overhauls the ship’s engines and repairs are made to the damaged bow.
Vingno noted, most of the injured passengers were standing as they were about to disembark, indicating passengers should not be allowed to stand while the vessel is in motion.
Following the incident, Vingno said inspections were immediately conducted on other ships at the Bredco port to ensure their seaworthiness.
Bacolod City Mayor Evelio Leonardia also released a statement yesterday, saying he ordered Vingno to investigate the incident./WDJ