Despite extreme poverty, he graduated in a state university and thereafter worked to save money for his board examination.
Possessed with a strong determination and sense of hard work, he was apparently on his way to achieving his dream of becoming a license electrical engineer and delivering his promise to his parents of building a house of their own.
That dream ended with his death, and because of the apparent recklessness of A.R. Adlawan construction firm.
Norman De Los Reyes, an electrical engineering graduate of Cebu Technological University, succumbed to death when he fell into an open drainage project with an estimated depth of 10 feet in Barangay Bulacao, Talisay Cebu last Sunday dawn.
He came from work in Lapulapu City and was on his way home to Minglanilla, Cebu when his motorcycle fell into the open pit.
The almost-always contractor of Cebu’s First District road projects, AR Adlawan Construction firm is again the one handling the said P47 million worth of drainage project.
The project owner is the Philippine government implemented under the supervision of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).
According to witnesses, since the excavation started December of last year they have not noticed that the contractor put precautionary measures to prevent the motorists from falling into the drainage.
There were no solid barriers, caution lines, signage and even reflectors that could signal to the motorists of the dangers in the area.
Also Bulacao Barangay Captain Raul Cabanero said that three days before the said incident, he called the attention of the contractor to put warning signs to inform the public of their on-going excavation.
The same request was reportedly made by the Talisay City Engineering Department. Such requests were not acted upon.
Almond de la Pena, the head of the City of Talisay Traffic Operations Development Authority (CTTODA), also said that a motorist was injured last month when he was hit by the contractor’s backhoe that was parked in the area. The contractor should have considered it as a strong warning.
I wonder why AR Adlawan was so stone-hearted despite the many requests to place safety measures in the area.
I feel curious why the contractor was so callous it refused to put early warning devices despite the previous accidents.
What kind of engineers does A.R. Adlawan company have? What kind of people does it have?
It is noteworthy that a safety officer is one of the pre-qualification requirements before the bidding of a government project.
Presumably, AR ADlawan, being the winning bidder, has safety officer insofar as documents or papers submitted to DPWH.
So where is its safety officer, if there is any in reality? What kind of safety officer does it have?
In every road excavation, the contractor has the obligation to place steel plate or solid barriers on the open hole to prevent industrial accidents. It will also put warning signs, reflectors and blinkers to prevent night time misfortune.
Does AR Adlawan not know these basic obligations?
It is also notable that in every government project, the safety and security of the public are items included in the budget. It is part of the total project cost. So the unavoidable questions are: where is the budget for the safety requirements?
Does the contractor purposely avoid such cost to maximize their profits without thinking that the public safety is compromised? Has the said budget already been consumed or shared with corrupt DPWH officials?
I just wonder that DPWH, which has supervision over the contractor, has not so far taken any actions.
In fact, district Engineer Lesley Anthony Molina in a media interview just advised the contractor to settle the incident with the victim’s family.
When Engr. Molina said it kept on reminding the contractor to put warning signs, does it mean to say that his office could not do something more than just reminding the contractor?
Is it not a fact that if the contractor would not respond to the reminder, the DPWH shall issue a formal notice of work suspension? If the contractor still would not take action, the DPWH can place it blacklisted. B
ut why Engr. Molina looks like an inutile supervisor of a supposed government project?
It is public knowledge that the recent mishap is not the first time experience for AR Adlawan.
There were many complaints on safety against this construction firm. In fact, said contractor was summoned by the provincial board last year because of the many accidents caused by their handling of road constructions.
The millions worth of question is, why despite the many safety violations of AR Adlawan, the same contractor seems to be almost-always the one handling the road projects of the first district of Cebu? Just asking.