Long road, long wait

By: Jose Santino S. Bunachita January 28,2015 - 10:37 AM

DAILY GRIND. Cebu Daily News reporter Jose Santino Bunachita  shields his face from the dust and heat as he and a CDN news team arrive at the Consolacion landfill and witness a long line of garbage trucks from Cebu City waiting for their turn to enter. (CDN Photos/Junjie Mendoza)

DAILY GRIND. Cebu Daily News reporter Jose Santino Bunachita shields his face from the dust and heat as he and a CDN news team arrive at the Consolacion landfill and witness a long line of garbage trucks from Cebu City waiting for their turn to enter. (CDN Photos/Junjie Mendoza)

It’s a long, winding and uphill road that Cebu City’s garbage trucks need to take before reaching the private landfill in barangay Polog, Consolacion town, northern Cebu.

The trucks pass through the busy Banilad-Talamban Road everyday, then navigate narrow upland roads of barangay Pit-os, a 20 kilometer route  from Cebu City to the landfill.

When it rains, the dirt road to the landfill gets slippery and dangerous especially for smaller trucks.

“Mas nindot gyud sa Inayawan kay duol raman gyud. Dili lisod ang dalan unya dili mi makulbaan ba (It’s easier  for us to dump in Inayawan because it’s  near. The road is not difficult and we don’t get worried),” said JR Navaja, a garbage truck loader of barangay Capitol Site.

Cebu Daily News visited the private landfill owned by Asian Energy Systems Corp., in Consolacion town last Monday but the news team was stopped at the entrance, a kilometer from the actual  dumping area where they were barred entry.

It’s a 10 kilometer distance from the main road in Consolacion town heading to the landfill in barangay Polog.


Parts of the road are concrete and asphalt, but the rest of the way is dusty and dotted with potholes.

When two trucks heading in opposite directions meet, one has to stop to allow the other vehicle to pass safely. Portions of the road have only a  single lane.

At the landfill entrance, several trucks were  waiting for their turn to go up to the main landfill where their collected garbage will be weighed and eventually dumped.

Only seven parking slots are available in the main landfill.

Beyond that number, trucks have to wait at the base of the mountain for their turn.

Rayla Renante, 40, is stationed near the entrance of the landfill where he records and keeps  manifestos from the Cebu City-owned and barangay garbage trucks that come.

“After the Inayawan landfill was closed (on Jan. 15), more trucks came here. The landfill can accommodate them but there have been accidents,” Renante said.

He’s a Cebu City Hall employee under the Department of Public Services (DPS) and has been working at  the landfill for nearly four years.


Last week, smaller garbage trucks from barangays Ermita and Sawang Calero slipped and veered off the uphill road while heading for the main landfill site.

Bulldozers and payloaders owned by the private landfill operator had to rescue the trucks, said Renante.

The city government pays P700 per ton of garbage dumped at the private landfill.

Renante’s job is to make sure that records of  barangay trucks match those recorded by the landfill management especially when it’s time for the DPS to pay tipping fees.


Aside from  Cebu City, the towns of Consolacion and Cordova also dump their garbage in the landfill.

Other private establishments and resorts also dump trash there.

When the Inayawan landfill was still operating, only north district barangays of Cebu City with bigger trucks went to the Consolacion landfill. Smaller barangay trucks went to the Inayawan landfill.

Despite the steep, sometimes difficult road to the Consolacion landfill, the process is more orderly, said several drivers and loaders.

“We get worried in Inayawan beecause  the scavengers, who are usually children, would  climb aboard our truck even when we’re still running,” said Ricky Gomez, a 23-year-old  garbage loader from barangay Apas.

But Gomez admits that their daily trips were reduced because of the long line of  trucks  waiting to dump their trash.


He said their usual two-hour round trip to the landfill before now takes five or more hours.

From Apas, their travel time can reach an hour and they have to stay and wait for their turn at the landfill for two to three hours.

The daily garbage trips are tough on barangay Mabolo which operates six small trucks.

Three vehicles were newly acquired, one had just been repaired and two others badly need repair, Mabolo barangay chairman Reynaldo Ompoc said.

“Kapoy ug linya para lang mo labay.  Kada adlaw mo byahe among mga truck para mo labay didto (It’s tiring to line up so you can dump garbage. Our trucks travel daily to dump garbage there),” he said./With a report from Correspondent Flor Cartuciano


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TAGS: Cebu City, Consolacion, solid waste management

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