Woman in Danao City mine pit collapse found dead
CEBU CITY, Philippines –As she would normally do every afternoon, Mejame Papaya, 46, went to the family-owned pigpen located not far from her house on Friday to tend to her pig.
Suddenly, the ground underneath her collapsed, taking her down along with her pig and boulders, and other debris.
After more than four hours of frantic search and rescue operation, Mejame’s body was found in the bottom of an old mine pit that collapsed in Barangay Sabang in Danao City on Friday evening, February 3, 2023.
Police Corporal Thomas Perez, desk officer of the Danao City Police Station, confirmed that Papaya did not survive after hours of being buried underneath boulders.
According to a police report, it was already past 7 p.m. when the search and rescue operation team found Papaya, almost four hours after the tragedy struck.
Roland Reyes of the Danao City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office said that at 4:55 p.m. on Friday, they received a call about the incident and immediately deployed responders.
However, due to safety issues, they were not able to immediately proceed.
“Karaan man gud ni siya nga mining sa limestone. Dugay na kay ni siya. Naa ni silay ad sa baboy sa ubos, timingan nisulod didto, nakamatngon gyud sila pero too late lang gyud. Tungod sa kalawm, we immediately deployed our heavy equipment,” Reyes said.
“According sa atoang in charge, estimated two meters ang gilawmon [the victim was buried],” he added.
Following the tragedy, Reyes said they will request the city’s engineering team to inspect the area for the possible relocation of other residents.
“Marelocate ni sila to safe zone. Nakita nato ni nga danger zone, ipa inspect nato ni sa engineering,” he further said.
Edgardo, the husband of Papaya said that it was around 4 p.m. when the portion of the ground collapsed. He said that he tried to save his wife who was in the pigpen but failed. Their pig also died.
He said he frantically searched for Mejame but failed to locate her.
Edgardo said they have been living in the area since 2019 and never noticed anything wrong about the ground where their house was sitting.
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