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19 Farmers Perish in Cagayan Road Accident
« on: November 04, 2019, 11:53:21 AM »
MANILA ---Agriculture Secretary William Dollente Dar on Friday condoled with families of the 19 farmers who perished in a road crash in Apayao province Thursday night.

Initial reports said the farmers were on their way home to Lattut, Cagayan when the Elf truck they were riding fell off into a ravine in Sitio Gassud, Barangay Karikitan, town of Conner, in Apayao.

"My family and I, and the entire Department of Agriculture (DA) extend our sincerest condolence to the families of Lattut farmers, who came from an inbred rice seeds distribution ceremony, in Rizal, Cagayan, held earlier in the day," Dar said in a statement.

"Initially, we have given the surviving families PHP15,000 and a cavan of rice," he said.

The token amount and rice are on top of the cash assistance shared by the Provincial Government of Cagayan and the Department of Social Welfare and Development, DA Cagayan Valley regional director Narciso Edillo said.

"On behalf of the DA family -- RFO2, Philippine Rice Research Institute, and other concerned bureaus and agencies -- we will extend every possible assistance to the relatives of the victims and those injured," Dar added.

He said he is closely monitoring the situation, adding that he and his family are deeply touched by the unfortunate accident.

The DA has also given PHP15,000 to those seriously injured, totaling 22.

According to news reports, the Elf truck, with 44 passengers, including the driver, was going uphill when its engine suddenly conked off, along with its brake system, causing it to fall into a ravine.

The overloaded truck also carried dozens of sacks of inbred rice seeds and corn. Three passengers were slightly injured, according to news reports.

The victims and those injured were rushed to Conner District Hospital and Cagayan Valley Medical Center. (PR)

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