Cebu quake stampede caught on video
3 killed, dozens hurt in stampede caused by 7.2 quake
CEBU - What would have been just another distribution of payouts under the government's Conditional Cash Transfer program on Tuesday turned deadly in the town of Pinamungajan in Cebu.
The magnitude 7.2 quake caused panic among locals waiting in line at the auditorium.
A video shot using a cellphone camera shows hundreds of beneficiaries scrambling to get out of the building.
People can be seen pushing each other.
Some fell to the ground and were stepped on by others rushing for the exit.
In the midst of the chaos, the cries of those who fell on the ground could not be heard. Only their hands could be seen waving for help.
Many children were trapped in the stampede. Some of them lost consciousness.
Helpless mothers could only embrace their injured children and comfort them.
It's not that help did not arrive. It did, but even police could do little to calm the crowd and restore order.
Menchu Lambon remembers that frightful moment so well.
She said she thought there was a bomb explosion because the lights of the auditorium were shattered.
"Sigawan na lang kami. Iyung mga ibang nanay sumisigaw, 'yung anak ko, yung anak ko,' pero walang nakikinig. Akala namin mamamatay na kami sa loob," she said.
For Jesus Lesbos, coming out of the stampede alive is enough. His cousin died trying to save his child.
"Initsa nya yung anak niya papunta sa labas, tapos natabunan na siya. Hindi ko alam kung paano pa naming malilimutan ang nangyaring ito," he said.
Three people, including a 4-year-old, were killed in the stampede. More than 30 others were injured.
Now, the auditorium is eerily quiet, as if nothing had happened inside.
But for those who lived through the nightmare, they said it will take a lifetime to drown out the screams of the victims in their memory. - ANC