By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
A fisherman was injured after a roll-on/roll-off vessel rammed his fishing boat last Thursday evening off the coast Bacolod City. Authorities identified the victim as Nonito Carlos, a resident of Pontevedra town’s Barangay Miranda.
Based on a statement Carlos provided to the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) in Bacolod City, he and his brother were fishing from two separate boats and, as he was working his fishing lines, he saw two vessels, one heading towards Bacolod City and another for Dumangas, Iloilo.
The fisherman said he recognized the Dumangas-bound vessel belonged to ferry company TriStar Megalink Corporation and, as the vessel approached, Carlos immediately signaled the vessel with his light. However, instead of maneuvering clear of each other, the fisherman claimed the vessel stayed the course until his boat was rammed and crushed.
Carlos said he managed to jump from his boat prior to impact and claimed he was nearly sucked in by the vessel’s propeller. While in the water, he was thrown about and struck by remnants of his boat.
The victim was later rescued by his brother and they immediately returned to shore to seek medical attention.
PCG-Bacolod station commander, Lt. Senior Grade Rockcliff Buling, said a representative from TriStar has already coordinated with the victim and the two parties have already come into an agreement./DGB, WDJ