Cop, family hurt as boulder falls on SUV in Kennon Road

BAGUIO CITY — A police officer, his wife and two children were hurt when a huge boulder fell on their vehicle before noon on Sunday, the municipal police chief of Tuba, Benguet said.

In a report sent to the Philippine News Agency Sunday evening, Senior Insp. James Acod said Police Officer 2 Jefferson Cadap, 28, was driving the Toyota Fortuner with license plate AHA 3502 registered to his wife Ginalyn, 27, around past 11 a.m. on Sunday at the Kennon Road towards the direction of the lowland, when a huge boulder suddenly fell from the mountain side, totally wrecking the left rear portion of the vehicle.

His children Xiehl Cadap, 4, and Zech Rhexelle Cadap, 2, suffered minor injuries.

Reports said Cadap initially sought permission from La Trinidad chief of police Chief Insp. Benson Macliing to join his wife to Rosario, La Union to canvass for prices of construction materials.

They took Kennon road with the intention to drop by the house of a relative residing at Camp 1, Kennon road.

However, while traversing the area of Camp 3, specifically at Sitio Tukang, the huge boulder fell on their vehicle.

Cadap’s wife and his two children were rushed to Pines Doctors Hospital on Magsaysay Avenue. Cadap who stayed on the site to first check on their personal belongings inside the vehicle was also persuaded by relatives to seek medical assistance after complaining of dizziness.

The four victims were confined at the hospital for further medical check-up.

Kennon Road, the shortest route to and from Baguio City had been on a close-open status since the city and the rest of Benguet started to experience continued heavy downpour on June 7. The same situation had been constant for many years whenever there are continuous rains in the area.

The Department of Public Works and Highways closed Kennon Road to traffic at 5:30 p.m. Friday but opened it again at 8 a.m. Saturday.

In an advisory from the Office of the Civil Defence (OCD) Cordillera on Friday, it said “the Regional Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (RDRRMC) and all concerned agencies were also advised to closely monitor the area for any incidents. Motorists and travellers are also reminded to take extra precaution.”

Following the rock slide, concerned agencies declared the road closed but eventually opened the same to vehicular traffic around 4:30 p.m. on Sunday, which was again ordered closed by DPWH regional Director Engineer Neri Bueno at 9 p.m. on Sunday until further notice. Dionisio Dennis, Jr/