Filtered By: Topstories

Mindoro oil spill cleanup seen to take up to 1 year, says Pola mayor

An expert estimated that it would take six months to 1 year to finish the cleanup for the oil spill in Oriental Mindoro, according to Pola town Mayor Jennifer Cruz on Wednesday.

“Ang sabi ng expert na dumating kahapon six to one year bago talaga malinis. Estimate pa lang nila pero hindi nila alam kung gaano katagal talaga,” she said in an interview on GMA News’ Unang Balita.

(The expert who went here yesterday said that it would take six months to one year to clear the oil spill. It was just an estimate but they do not really know how long it would take.)

“Hindi nila alam kung ano ang isasagot sa amin kahit sila ang expert kasi makapit talaga ang oil na pumunta parang asphalt na sobrang baho, dikit na dikit sa bato sumasama siya doon sa ating mga buhangin,” she added.

(Even the experts cannot answer our question because the oil residues are sticky like asphalt, very foul, it was sticking on rocks and sands.)

Cruz said the number of people who developed respiratory illnesses due to the oil spill has already increased from 18.

According to Cruz, she also experienced fever after being exposed during her visit to most affected areas.

“Yung 18 na report kahapon nadagdagan na yun kasi lahat sila pare-parehas ang complain, sumasakit ang ulo, ang tiyan, nahihilo, sobrang sakit sa dibdib, lumalala yung ubo at sipon, ganun ka-grabe,” she said.

(The 18 cases reported yesterday already increased because they have the same complaint, headaches, stomach pain, dizziness, chest pain, cough, and cold.)

Department of Health (DOH) officer-in-charge Maria Rosario Vergeire earlier said the agency is coordinating with local units to draft guidelines for a clearer framework, urging residents to wear face masks for the time being.

“We are going to draft guidelines para ma-guide natin ang local governments para appropriate lahat ng sinusuot ng komunidad,” she said during a visit to the area.

(We are going to draft guidelines so we can guide local governments so that what the communities wear are appropriate.)

Motor tanker Princess Empress was carrying 800,000 liters of industrial fuel oil when it sank due to strong waves on February 28. All the 20 people on board were rescued.

According to the PCG, the motor tanker sank 400 meters into the ocean, which was too deep for divers to reach. — Joviland Rita/RSJ, GMA Integrated News