9 fatalities in Laguna plane crash identified

September 02, 2019
Plane crash
Firefighters sift through the site where an air-ambulance plane crashed as they search for the bodies of passengers, at a resort area in Calamba City, Laguna province, south of Manila on September 1, 2019. Nine people were killed when an air-ambulance plane crashed at a resort area near the Philippine capital on September 1, 2019, sparking a fierce blaze and sending terrified locals fleeing, authorities said. Dramatic video on social media showed emergency vehicles rushing toward a building engulfed in roaring flames in Calamba City as authorities urged crowds to move away for their own safety. / AFP / STR

POLICE yesterday identified the nine passengers of the ill-fated small plane that crashed into a private resort in Calamba City, Laguna on Sunday afternoon.

The bodies of the nine, who were burned beyond recognition, were retrieved from the wreckage of the 11-seater King Air 350 Medical Evacuation plane.

Authorities said the flight manifest showed that there were nine people onboard: Pilot Captain Jesus Hernandez, co-pilot First Officer Lino Cruz Jr., Dr. Garret Garcia, nurses Kirk Eoin Badilla and Yamato Togawa, Ryx Gil Laput, Raymond Bulacja, patient New Zealander Tom Carr and his wife, Erma Carr.

The nine were onboard the plane which crashed at the Agojo Private Resort located inside the Miramonte Subdivision in Bgy. Pansol, Calamba City around 3 p.m. on  Sunday.

Also injured and taken to the hospital for treatment were John Rey Roca, 19; and Malou Roca, 49, both caretakers of the resort where the plane crashed.

ONLY 8 LISTED IN FLIGHT MANIFEST

The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) yesterday clarified that only eight persons were listed in the flight manifest.

The CAAP said the unlisted passenger was Erma Carr, a Filipina with New Zealand citizenship,  and wife of the New Zealander patient.

The CAAP-Aircraft Accident Investigation and Inquiry Board (AAIIB) is investigating the cause of the crash.

Laguna Police Provincial Office director Col. Eleazar Matta said the ill-fated plane left Dipolog City Airport for Manila at 1:40 p.m. on the same day.

Witnesses said they saw the plane flying erratically before it crashed.

Small parts of the plane scattered near the crash site and damaged a number of houses, specifically the resort area, where it landed.

On Saturday, a small plane crashed on the shoreline of Bgy. Papaya in Nasugbu, Batangas slightly injuring its pilot and a co-pilot.

Captain Eugene Avila, 65; and his co-pilot Capt. Armando Ducat, 25, were rescued by local fishermen and taken to the Jabez Medical Center for medical treatment.

The pilots said that the plane incurred a fuel system failure which caused the crash.

With Willy Balasa, Celso Lidot and Gil Aman