Very risky

March 07, 2020

LAST Thursday’s helicopter crash that injured Philippine National Police chief Gen. Archie F. Francisco F. Gamboa and seven others, including three other PNP generals, is ample proof that overhead wires are “risky.”

Following the crash, the public wants the House of Representatives to speed up the passage of a proposed law that mandates the installation and relocation of all wire and cable system underground.

And no less than “Bagong Henerasyon” (BH) party-list Congresswoman Bernadette Herrera, a House deputy majority leader, is pushing for the speedy approval of House Bill (HB) No. 5845.

In the view of many, including the ordinary citizens not only in the metropolis but throughout the country, it is highly likely that the Lower Chamber of Congress will prioritize the passage of the measure.

“I urge Congress to prioritize this measure, and make the unsafe and nasty overhead cables hanging from street poles a thing of the past,” said the party-list lawmaker.

Reports said the ill-fated helicopter, with body number RP3086 Bell 249, accidentally hit a high-tension wire upon take-off in Barangay San Antonio, San Pedro City, Laguna.

Herrera said “it is really high time for the country to relocate and place all cables underground.” And it is necessary, she said, to exhaust all means to ensure safety in all public spaces.

The underground relocation and installation of all wires and cables in the country must be done within 10 years upon the effectivity of the law, according to the articulate lady legislator.

Likewise, all wires and utility poles that are non-operational must be taken down within the given period.

Congresswoman Herrera said that in Davao City, where President Duterte was a long-time mayor, the underground cabling project, which started in 2014, is nearing completion.

Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio has signed an ordinance outlining the ground work for the project and imposing heavy fines on those who would try to delay the completion of the undertaking.