Cebu's Lawis Ledge, a dangerous area for ships
CEBU -- Lawis Ledge is considered a dangerous area for ships that pass through it going to and leaving the Cebu City port.
The passenger ship St. Thomas Aquinas was passing through this narrow strait in the port of Cebu when it collided with a cargo ship on Friday night.
The Thomas Aquinas was carrying more than 800 people, while the Sulpicio Express 7, which did not sink, had 36 crew members.
The Philippine Coast Guard on Sunday said they have recorded several incidents that happened in the same spot.
Just earlier this year, MV Trans Asia 9 ran aground in Lawis Ledge, while two years ago, three people died after a fastcraft also sank in the area.
Commodore William Melad of the Philippine Coast Guard Central Visayas said the Lawis Ledge is actually a dangerous meeting point for vessels due to its limitation of space.
"The area there is a narrow passage of only 600 yards or 3.3 nautical miles for vessels to meet," says Melad in a press conference.
The PCG said that after the search and rescue operation, they will include in their investigation how they can possibly solve the problem in the area.
Mayor Adelino Sitoy of the town of Cordova has long been suggesting of building more ports, particularly in Talisay City, Lilo-an, Minglanilla and Consolacion to decongest the traffic of vessels in the port of Cebu City.
He hopes that this matter will be taken up after the collision of two ships.
Meanwhile, the PCG is still waiting for the marine protest from the ship captain of Philippine Span Asia Carrier Corp., Capt. Rolito Gilo. Ship Capt. Reynan Bermejo of 2GO had already submitted his Marine Protests.
The two ship captains are already in the custody of both shipping companies. Melad said they will be available for questioning as soon as the official investigation starts.
At the moment, the PCG does not want to comment on which of the ship could have done something wrong that caused the accident. Part of their investigation will be assessing if one of them did not observe some rules at sea.