Miner dies from suffocation in tunnel

A miner died from suffocation inside a tunnel in Barangay Talacagay, Hinoba-an, Negros Occidental Tuesday. (Photo courtesy of Hinoba-an Municipal Police Station)

By Glazyl Y. Masculino

BACOLOD City – A miner was found dead in a tunnel after he suffocated from smoke at Sitio Arum, Barangay Talacagay, Hinoba-an, Negros Occidental last Tuesday.

Police identified the victim as 42-year-old Ignacio Ortega of the said barangay, but a native of Toboso town.

Police Major Jaynick Bermudez, town police chief, said the victim and his cousin burned a stone by using charcoal inside the 20-foot deep tunnel last Monday.

They then decided to get out of the tunnel because of too much smoke.

However, early the following day, the victim returned alone inside the tunnel. He was then found unconscious by his cousin later that day.

His cousin asked help from other miners to bring the victim to a hospital, but he was declared dead.

Bermudez said that the small scale mining in the area was illegal, however, they were not able to catch some miners because they failed to reach the area where the incident happened.

He said the barangay officials were already informed about it so that they could refer the said illegal activity to the local government for discretion.