TIGAON, Camarines Sur (Nov. 6, 2011) – The reputation of the Tinambac-Siruma road as one of the worst in the country could be a thing of the past very soon as the concreting of 39-kilometer secondary national road is finally started.
Three construction firms were given the Notice to Proceed after Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Sec. Rogelio Singson ordered the release of P80 million for the initial road concreting.
DPWH Camarines Sur 3rd district office assistant district engineer Gemma Timbang said that the deteriorated highway section connecting the towns of Tinambac and Siruma was personally inspected by DPWH Sec. Singson in June this year in response to an urgent request by Camarines Sur 3rd District Congressman Arnulfo Fuentebella for immediate concreting of the frequently impassable all-weather road.
Sec. Singson himself had described the condition of the said road as "deplorable" and responded with the release of the said initial fund that will be used for the concreting of a critical 4-kilometer section.
Tinambac Mayor Ruel Villarde told Sec. Singson that hundreds of residents in the adjoining towns depend on the said national road for transporting marine and agricultural products to Naga City and Metro Manila despite its often intolerable state.
A video footage posted in the Internet in 2010 showed passengers of a jeepney walking the muddy route, while carabaos tied on ropes were used to pull out a passenger jeep stuck in knee-deep mud.
Philippine Army personnel who hauled relief goods to Siruma after typhoons in 2009 complained of extreme difficulty driving in the said road stretch even when using heavy-duty army trucks.
The road section covering at least 10 villages mostly inTinambac town has no proper drainage, causing it to be prone to washouts during heavy rains.
Sancho Construction, Honeyville and Partido Construction firms won the bid for the concreting works on the 4-kilometer section and are given 80 days to complete the work. (SONNY SALES)