CBAO declares Sandico slide an accident

By JAY-EM B. SERAPION
www.nordis.net

BAGUIO CITY— City Buildings and Architecture Office (CBAO) said in the regular hearing at the City Council last June 25 that the FC Laranang Construction and the Mega Pines Condominium Project did not violate any rules in the excavation contracts approved by their office in relation to the land slide accident along Sandico Street, Salud Mitra last June 13.

Two people were buried alive when portions of Sandico Street collapsed near a construction site, dragging the makeshift office of FC Laranang Construction. The land slide was triggered by torrential rains. It happened near a residential area and behind an elementary school.

As action, Mayor Mauricio Domogan ordered CBAO to inspect and to conduct investigations on the said accident. CBAO was also ordered to check all the construction sites in the city for the safety of the public from future damages like accidents from excavations due to landslides and erosion.

“The owner and the contractors of the project where the accident happened, secured an excavation permit from City Building Office. It was approved. They were able to submit the design of the construction before and during their excavation. So technically, the method that they have implemented is called shotcreting and soilnail. Generally, that is an accepted method for all slope protection. They completed all the permits. [They have] No violations based on the findings of the investigations,” CBAO Engineer Nazita F. Banez said.

When asked who is liable to what happened in the accident, Banez said that what happened at Sandico Street was really an accident. She said that the role of CBAO was to only issue excavation permits in the construction site for the buildings.

“They are solely liable for everything under the [Building] Code of the Philippines. Kung hindi sila kumuha ng permit at alam namin na magi-excavate sila…ay doon kami liable. Pero they went to a process naman e. Pumasa naman sila. Liability would just come in after having proven through in-depth investigation and some documentations,” Banez said.

On the process of giving excavation permits, she said that the conditions are very clear. Under those is the safety of the employees in the construction site that is needed to be complied with.

“The role of the contractor and the owner is to secure an excavation permit from us (CBAO). Very clear ang conditions sa permit na ibinibigay ng office. Ini-evaluate namin yung methodology nila. So once na pumasa sa evaluation namin yung methodology nila, we give them the permit,” Banez explained.

On the other note, Banez said that the fixing of the road is under the jurisdiction of City Engineering Office and their priority is to first secure the protection of the existing Callalily Building and University of Baguio (UB) Buildings near the site.

City Engineering Office, OIC Engineer Edgar Victorio R. Olpindo said in a statement that once they knew about the accident, they closed the road for reconstruction. He made sure that the road restoration will be finished before Christmas.

Now, CBAO requires the contractors of the said project to do a soil test. They also required them to plan of how to safeguard undamaged adjacent buildings.# nordis.net

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