ITOGON, Benguet – A 28-year old pocket miner died after he was buried alive inside their working area when portions of their portal reportedly collapsed Monday at Upper Goldfields, Poblacion here.
Senior Superintendent Rodolfo S. Azurin, Jr., director of the Benguet provincial police office, identified the victim as Arman Manggayo Bumakil, 28, a small-scale miner and who temporarily lives at Upper Goldfields, Poblacion, Itogon, Benguet but hails from Sabangan, Mountain Province.
He said the body of the dead miner was retrieved by combined operatives of the Itogon municipal police station, municipal fire department, municipal health office and members of small-scale mining groups in the area from the tunnel operated by a certain Rudy Lagayo, Sr.
Initial police investigation showed a certain Murpy Passol, a co-worker of the victim, arrived at their camp and noticed that the victim was not inside or within the vicinity of their shanty prompting him to report the matter to their boss and asked him on the victim’s whereabouts.
Azurin stated both Lagayo and Passol immediately went to their portal and saw the lifeless body of the victim buried inside the tunnel which forced them to report the incident to the local police force.
Combined police operatives and rescuers immediately proceeded to the tunnel and recovered the victim’s body which was immediately brought to the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center but was pronounced dead by attending physicians.
The victim’s cadaver was subsequently brought to their residence for it to be accorded the appropriate rituals prior to his body being brought home to his hometown.
Azurin appealed to small-scale miners provincewide to observe extra precaution when reporting for work in their respective tunnels in order to prevent the occurrence of untoward incidents that might compromise their safety.
By Dexter A. See