EDITORIAL - Wear and tear

The Freeman
EDITORIAL - Wear and tear

If we frequently write editorials about accidents at sea it’s because they happen more often than we want them to. And now it has happened again.

Last May 21, a fast craft from Ormoc collided with a cargo vessel near the Mactan-Mandaue Bridge. The impact, caught on video and shared widely online, was such that several rows of seats were ripped out from where they were attached to the floor, sending several passengers flying, some of them requiring medical attention.

According to the Philippine Coast Guard, the problem was with the fast craft which experienced steering system and engine failure. Since as of this writing there has been no word from the fast craft company yet and the coast guard said nothing more, we have to consider this as the main cause of the accident.

We realize that accidents do happen. There is no way to 100% prevent these acts of God from occurring. We also realize that everything succumbs to wear and tear eventually. Even the most simple mechanical systems like a bicycle can experience wear and tear and require repairs after a while, much more so a complicated one like a fast craft that is expected to move over the sea at high speed, at the same time make sure its passengers are safe.

However, the latter, referring to wear and tear, is more preventable than things that come out of the blue or events that are ordained by the Almighty. Regular checks and maintenance can make sure wear and tear --which can also be the cause of accidents-- are remedied.

In this case it might not be wrong to say the fast craft involved in the accident could have needed more regular checks and maintenance. And that the fast craft company should do more to ensure the safety of its customers.

Safety at sea is something never to be taken lightly. While the accident may have happened near land, the vessel was still in the water when it happened, it could still have been worse, much worse.



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