Tuesday, December 28, 2010

3 die as ambulance rams Skyway toll booth

MANILA, Philippines (2nd UPDATE) - A speeding ambulance rammed a toll booth along Skyway, killing 3 people and wounding 4 others on Tuesday morning.
Ed Nepomuceno, vice president for operations of Skyway Corp., said the accident happened shortly before 7 a.m. near the TESDA office in Taguig City.
Nepomuceno said among the fatalities was a patient identified as Felix Soler, who was being rushed by an ambulance owned by the PKI Employees' Welfare Union from Lipa City, Batangas to a hospital in Manila.
Soler was declared dead upon arrival at a hospital in ParaƱaque City. The 2 other fatalities were identified as Rio Panganiban and Rosalina Asis.
Nepomuceno said that based on initial investigations, the ambulance came too fast as it approached the Skyway toll plaza. The driver lost control of the steering wheel and rammed the ambulance to Toll Gate No. 6 manned by Marlene Botaldo.
Earlier radio dzMM reports said that the ambulance ran over the toll’s barriers before slamming into toll booth.
Botaldo was among the injured victims. The ambulance driver identified as Noel Mercado and 2 more passengers -- Mary Grace Soler and Melba Asis -- were also wounded.
The injured victims have been brought to the Makati Medical Center.
Nepomuceno said 5 to 6 accidents happen along Skyway on a daily basis and mostly are due to driver error.
Fatigue, lack of sleep and overspeeding are among the top causes of accidents bases on their records, he said. -- Reports from Edwin Sevidal and Ricky Velasco, radio dzMM and Ryan Chua, ABS-CBN News

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