Albee orders probe into accident that left teacher dead, 37 injured 

Arlyn Tolosa Verde, the teacher who died in the accident, in a photo posted on her Facebook page* 

Bacolod Mayor Alfredo Abelardo Benitez has ordered an investigation into the accident that left a teacher dead and 37 others injured at Purok Talus, Brgy. Igmaya-an, Don Salvador Benedicto town in Negros Occidental on Friday, June 14. 

The passengers, mostly teachers of the Paglaum Village Elementary School in Bacolod, were onboard a Bacolod City government bus when its brakes failed at a downhill section of the highway and fell on its side. 

“We will conduct a thorough investigation to determine the cause of this tragic accident to ensure that such incidents do not happen again in the future,” the mayor said in a statement released Saturday. 

The city government has provided assistance to victims   under the Bacolod Comprehensive Health Program, Caesar Distrito, the mayor’s spokesman said. 

Arlyn Tolosa Verde, 42, died in the accident when she hit a stone as the bus fell on its side, SSgt. Benjie Bantilan, Don Salvador Benedicto Police Station investigator, said Sunday, June 16. 

The bus had 39 passengers on board, and one died while 37 were injured, 31 of whom were teachers, Bantilan said. Also injured where five members of their immediate family and the bus helper. 

He said the majority of those injured who were hospitalized had been discharged. 

Still in the hospital was the bus helper who had a dislocated shoulder and a teacher with a broken arm, Bantilan said. 

“Mayor Benitez was at the hospital Friday evening and assured that the city government would take care of the victims’ medical bills,” he said. 

He said the driver, who was unharmed,  was released from police custody since the reglementary period for his detention had lapsed.  The families have no plans to file charges against the driver since it was purely an accident, Bantilan said. 

The teachers were returning to Bacolod City after a team building activity at Sipaway Island in San Carlos City.* 

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