Survivors, families of victims of Tanay bus accident share harrowing experience

MANILA, Philippines - A day following the horrific tragedy that claimed the lives of 15 people riding a tourist bus en route to Tanay, Rizal, several survivors and families of victims have decided to break their silence.

Survivors, families of victims of Tanay bus accident share harrowing experience

The bus owned by Panda Coach Tours and Transport, Inc. carrying more or less 60 students of Bestlink College in Novaliches Quezon City was on its way to Sacramento Adventure Camp in Tanay when the unfortunate incident happened. Ten were declared dead on the spot, while five others including staff and the driver identified as Julian Lacorda Jr. passed away in the hospital while being treated.

Burning Tire

Mark Daniel Literal, who fortunately survived the accident, recounted the moment just before the bus smashed into an electric post along a curved road in Magnetic Hill, Barangay Sampaloc in Tanay.

Literal said that they had smelled a burning tire and immediately alerted Lacorda about it. However, Literal claimed that Lacorda ignored their warning.

A few minutes later, they noticed that the bus was moving unsteadily causing their things from overhead compartment to fall. The driver then informed them that the breaks of the bus had failed.

According to Literal, the driver attempted to avoid other vehicles and the ravine.

"Nagulat na lang kami na gumegewang na 'yung bus. Naglalaglagan na 'yung mga gamit namin [mula sa overhead compartment]. Sabi ng driver, 'sorry!' Sorry daw. Wala na palang preno,” Literal said.

Another survivor identified as Roluna Litscher supported Literal’s claim.

Although the two luckily escaped death, their other classmates were not fortunate enough to survive the accident.

“Isa po sana ako sa tutulong kaso nahilo na ako," Literal recounted.

”Grabe 'yung isa kong classmate... Basag 'yung mukha. Yung mga nasa unahan [nakaupo] ang grabe." he added.

Father of victim speaks up

Danilo Baday never thought that his son Mark David will no longer celebrate his 25th birthday next week. Mark David was among the students killed in the accident.

A third year Hotel and Restaurant Management student, Mark David was not supposed to join the field trip but was allegedly forced to guide first year students under the National Service Training Program (NSTP).

Baday and parents of other victims are considering filing charges against the school.

Several parents of the victims also claimed that their children were forced to join the tour.

"Tinatakot nila yung mga estudyante. Sinasabi nila sa mga estudyante hindi daw sasama sa field trip ibabagsak daw sa subject,” a certain Mr. Pepito told GMA News.

Should college field trips be banned after Tanay bus accident?

--Mini, The Summit Express

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