Benguet Corp. cites rescuers of trapped miner
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines—Benguet Corp. has commended the members of the team that rescued Felipe Plimaco, an independent small-scale miner who was trapped for a week in a collapsed mining tunnel in Benguet province.
The rescuers received certificates of commendation from Benguet Corp. president Benjamin Philip Romualdez during the company’s recent 109th anniversary celebrations, the company said in a statement.
Plimaco and another small-scale miner, Johnson Batiangao, entered a mining tunnel in Coros, Bila, Bokod, Benguet last Aug. 3, to install timber supports when the tunnel suddenly caved in. Batiangao, who was able to get out, went to the Philippine National Police which in turn sought the help of Benguet Corp., the country’s oldest mining company.
The company immediately dispatched a rescue team, headed by safety manager Melchor Taclobao to the Bokod tunnel.
Rescuers installed a PVC pipe to serve as Pilmaco’s lifeline for food and air after initial efforts to rescue him failed because of sudden muck flows that covered up the alternative passageways that the rescuers had created.
The rescue operations proved to be difficult because of the inferior dimensions of the tunnel and the presence of muck produced by the loose ground saturated with rain water.
Benguet Corp. then sent a reinforcement team of miners to the cave-in site.
Pilmaco was finally rescued on Aug. 10, and was immediately turned over to the municipal physician for treatment.
The various teams that worked round the clock to rescue the trapped miner also included miners from Philex Mining Corp.
At the Aug. 14 awarding ceremony, Romualdez praised the swift and courageous efforts of the Benguet Corp. miners who were given commendations and tokens. Riza T. Olchondra
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