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LTFRB suspends operator of bus in deadly Nueva Ecija accident

The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) on Tuesday ordered a 30-day preventive suspension against Leomarick Trans after one of its buses fell off a ravine in Nueva Ecija, killing over 20 people.

"The order is issued in view of the vehicular accident that happened on April 18, 2017, at around 11:30 in the morning along Barangay Capintalan, Carranglan, Nueva Ecija, resulting in the death of 25 passengers and multiple physical injuries to others, involving respondent-operator's bus with plate no. AVZ-757," the LTFRB order read.

Authorities said 26 people were killed in the accident while 22 others were injured.

The LTFRB suspension order was issued against Leonardo Patulot, the operator of Leomarick Trans, with has authorized route from Bangued, Abra to Ilagan, Isabela and vice versa.

The order will be effective within 30 days upon receipt of the respondent.

The operator is further directed to comply with the following within the 30-day preventive suspension:

  • Inspection and determination of road worthiness of the authorized buses of respondent-operator after bringing the said buses to the Motor Vehicle Inspection Service (MVIS) of the Land Transportation Office
  • Undergo Road Safety Seminar of respondent-operator's drivers and conductors to be conducted or scheduled by the LTFRB
  • Compulsory drug testing of drivers and conductors
  • Submit the certificate of registration and latest LTO official receipts of the units including the names of drivers and conductors
  • Submit video clippings of road worthiness inspection, Road Safety Seminar, and drug testing
  • Proof that the buses are duly installed with Global Navigation Satelite System device and registered with Bus Management Information System
  • National Bureau of Investigation, Philippine national Police, and Barangay clearances of all authorized drivers.
  • System of hiring and supervision of the authorized drivers and conductors.
  • Proof of payment from its insurance company, that the insurance benefits arising from vehicular accident has been duly received by the victims/passengers
  • The operator is ordered to produce a show cause within 72 hours upon receipt of the suspension order, explaining why his Certificate of Public Convenience should not be suspended, canceled or revoked

Both the operator and the driver of the bus involved in the incident were invited to appear in a hearing scheduled on May 2.

"Failure on the part of the respondent-operator and his driver to appear before this Board on the date mentioned shall be considered as a waiver on their part to be heard and this case shall be decided on the basis of the records of the Board," the LTFRB said.

However, the driver of the ill-fated bus was among those killed in the incident. —John Ted Cordero/KBK, GMA News