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Skyway O & M acted fast on reports re falling debris

/ 09:48 PM January 20, 2012

We reply to the letter of Carlito S. Villanueva (Inquirer, 1/13/12), regarding his unfortunate experience last Dec. 18, 2011. We take exception to Villanueva’s claim that our company did not act immediately even after several vehicles, his included, were reported to have been damaged by hard debris while traveling southbound on our toll road in the vicinity of Sales Bridge.

One of our patrol officers arrived on site within minutes after we received the report of the first incident which occurred just before 8 a.m. At that time, it was still not clear that debris was falling from the Sales Bridge down on our toll road below. Hence our patrol officer, supported by our CCTV team based in our head office, diligently scanned the vicinity looking for suspects who may have maliciously hurled the debris. Seeing none, our officer went back on patrol.

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Shortly after 10 a.m., we started to receive reports from different exit toll plazas about vehicles being damaged by debris in the same vicinity. Most of these incidents occurred within seconds or just minutes of each other. We immediately dispatched several of our patrol officers to the area. By around 10:30 a.m, those at Sales Bridge discovered what was by then a small hole that was not there earlier. It was surrounded by cracks. Seeing it was located directly above the lane traversed earlier by the damaged vehicles, our senior officer at the site immediately gave instructions to completely close the affected lanes of both the Sales Bridge and our toll road directly below it.

We also simultaneously informed the Department of Public Works and Highways about the damage to their Sales Bridge. By 11:50 a.m. of the same day, a DPWH official was at the site to inspect and direct repair works. Although the Sales Bridge is not within our area of responsibility, we continued to post traffic enforcers there until the DPWH completed repairing the damage a few days after.

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We hope this clarifies that the Skyway O & M Corp. was not the cause of Villanueva’s or anyone else’s misfortune that day, and that contrary to his letter, we had actually acted swiftly and efficiently to ensure the safety of motorists on our toll road and on the government’s Sales Bridge.

—RAMON M. BORROMEO,

officer in charge,

Office of the President,

Skyway O & M Corp.

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TAGS: falling debris, letters, road safety, skyway
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