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Company fined for spill

The Davao Packaging Company has initially been slapped with a P30,000 penalty over the oil spill at Ising River in Barangay Taba, Carmen, Davao del Norte on Wednesday noon.

But Lt. Commander George Maganto, the commander of the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) Davao Station, said they will still be filing more charges against the company over the oil spill.

Maganto said the company has already paid the initial fine: P10,000 for oil spillage, P10,000 for failure to notify  the PGC and another P10,000 for having no PCG-approved oil spill contingency plan.

Authorities are still conducting clearing operation to prevent the oil from reaching the sea.

Commodore Roy Echeverria, the commander of Coast Guard District Southeastern Mindanao (CGDSEM), said the oil already affected some 20 kilometers of the river.

He said 24 drums of oily mixture and 117 bags of contaminated solid waste were recovered by the authorities. At least 10 thousand liters of bunker oil were spilled to the river based on the company inventory.

A team from Marine Environmental Protection Group of the Coast Guard is containing the spill.

Echeverria said company workers are also helping.

In a separate interview yesterday, Commander George Ursabia, the spokesperson of Coast Guard District in Southeastern Mindanao, said the company’s pipeline was busted causing the bunker oil to leak into the river.

He said Coast Guard personnel are still conducting further investigation as they are talking with the management on how to address the incident and the subsequent violations.

Ursabia said they will also conduct a survey in the nearby areas that may be affected by the spill.

“Our personnel are still conducting clearing operation to prevent a fish kill,” he said. “But based on our assessment, only fishes along the river will be affected.”

He said no fish pond is operating in the area.

Ursabia said the company will face additional penalties because the incident caused big damage to the environment.



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