Seven aid workers, mostly government doctors, were seriously injured in a vehicular accident after holding medical missions in typhoon-wrecked Baganga, Davao Oriental, Tuesday afternoon, a military official said Wednesday.
Major Jacob Thaddeus Obligado, commander of the Army’s 10th civil-military operations battalion, identified the victims as Dr. Nic Cantiro, Dr. Almatin Dimaucom, Dr. Nor-ayin Salic, Dr. Junnah Mangacoy, Dr. Grace Espinosa, Dr. Taher Salaik, all members of the Maguindanao Provincial Health Office; and their driver Tuy Pangilan.
All seven were brought to the Cateel District Hospital and were later transferred to the Southern Philippines Medical Center in Davao City.
“Si Dr. Salaik lang ang stable. The rest (are in) critical condition,” Obligado said in a text message.
The incident occurred around 4:15 p.m. while the seven were travelling along the National Highway in Brgy. Saoquigue on a black Mitsubishi Pajero.
The seven were on the way to the incident command post (ICP) in Brgy. Lucod, which serves as a center of relief operations for victims of super typhoon “Pablo,” Obligado said.
“Pauwi na sila noon after a week of conducting medical missions, dadaan lang sila sa ICP bago umuwi,” he said.
“May iniwasan daw na motor kaya bumangga sa puno (ang sasakyan),” Obligado said.
Baganga, the town where “Pablo” (international name: Bopha) made its first landfall on Dec. 4, is one of the municipalities that bore the typhoon’s brunt.
Some 127 people died, more than 400 were hurt, and at least 48 remain missing in the town, according to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council.
The storm also destroyed 6,900 houses in the town, which still has no communication lines and electricity, according to the NDRRMC. (John Roson)
– end –