Three Skyway contractors fined for mishap
A steel girder at the East Service Road in Muntinlupa City fell and crushed over commuter vehicles on Saturday.
STAR/ File

Three Skyway contractors fined for mishap

Xave Gregorio ( - December 2, 2020 - 5:52pm

MANILA, Philippines — The labor department imposed a fine of at least P380,000 on three contractors involved in the Skyway mishap which killed one and injured five others.

The amount would accrue daily starting at the time the penalized contractors have received the order until the payment had been settled, a seven-page order said on Wednesday. Companies involved cannot be immediately reached for comment.

Of the three companies slapped with penalty, Yuchengo-led EEI Corp. was fined the largest at a sum of P170,000. The amount was for three violations namely failure to submit occupation health and safety reports that charge P30,000, causing death and serious injury (P100,000) and absence of third party inspection certificate (P40,000).

Subcontractor Mayon Machinery Rentrade Inc., meanwhile, was charged P80,000. Broken down, P40,000 each was slapped to the firm for lacking an occupational safety and health program, as well as safety guidelines and procedures on crane operations.

Another builder, Bauer Foundations Philippines Inc., was fined P130,000, P30,000 each for lacking sufficient number of fire extinguishers, safety and directional signages. A slightly bigger P40,000 was added for poor access for workers and employees.

In the order, labor regional director Sarah Buena Mirasol stressed the labor department had jurisdiction over the case even if pepple who died and got injured in the accident were motorists and not employees of the contractors.

“The public roads are considered part of the workplace. Hence, the jurisdiction of the DOLE in case involving occupational safety and health standards cannot be gainsaid,” Mirasol said.

For a day, the labor department had halted all works on the Skyway Extension Project following the accident before relaxing the moratorium to cover only segments of the highway where the steel girder collapsed. 

While the partial suspension has not been lifted, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III indicated he would do so soon, potentially helping speed up construction of one of the government’s flagship infrastructure projects. Contractors earlier said disruptions from the accident would delay project completion to February 2021 from the original plan to open next month.

The Skyway Extension Project will open at least three new lanes in the northbound section and two lanes southbound, within the 14-kilometer stretch. Once completed, the project is seen as a viable alternative to EDSA for motorists going from south to north Luzon and vice-versa.

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