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2/10/13

Low Value Of Life in the Philippines

Another horrific accident in Talisay Philippines

Road connecting Toledo and Talisay

As I read the paper today, again I am horrified by another death that was senseless and could have been prevented.  This one happen in the city of Talisay.  They are expanding the road that travels between Talisay and Toledo when a boulder fell from the expansion project and killed a lady riding a motorcycle.  Now this was not the first incident where it has injured or killed someone.   Earlier in the month a boulder fell on a vehicle and injured the passengers inside.     The response of the officials was " they are on a tight schedule" and the contractor "advised to come up with preventive measure".   One person died and two were injured and this is the best that can be done for these people.

So is there a lower value of life placed on people here in the Philippines.


upside down ship princess star
Are these companies held accountable and made to pay damages that are equal to the life that is lost.  With the court system backlog most of these companies offer settlements that are lower then what should be paid.  The courts are notoriously slow and may take decades to get a settlement.  The people that live in poverty can not afford such a long drawn out court case.  So there is very little to protect them in regards to loss of life when neglect on the part of a company or private party.  In 2008 a ship called the Princess star sunk and killed  828 people.  The shipping line offered to pay 25,000 pesos (about $500) to each  of the families.  Barely enough to cover the funeral expenses of those families.  Several families (64) refused and took the case to court.  Today going on 5 years after the incident they have not been settled.  

Workers placed at risk


I so many times see workers welding without glasses or dangling from a high rise construction site as they complete work on these towers.  I lived in Corona Del Mar a nice subdivision in Talisay Philippines.  They were constructing a home.  While the worker was placing the roof truss on the second floor he touched the 33 KW  power line.  This sent his body into convulsions and sounded like a cannon went off.  He fell from the second floor and landed on the ground.  We rushed him to the hospital and he survived.  Though a simple call to the power company and placing caps on this line would have prevented it.  Is it the cost to have them come out and do this simple procedure or is it just neglect on the part of the contractor.   

These types of accidents occur daily from traffic accidents to construction accidents.  People just not taking the time to prevent tragedy.  Though in many cases they are preventable.   Is it the money that prevents it or greed or is it a slow court system.  Maybe there are no repercussions to these acts that kill so many.  Is it also the court system that takes years and decades to decide a case.  I think it is all of the above.  There is not one thing that causes this as there are many.  Filipinos do not place a lower value on life they are just caught in a system that fails to work for them.   







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