Polangui mayor orders village officials to conduct info drives in railroad communities, beef up tanods to avoid more mishaps

POLANGUI, Albay — Mayor Raymond Adrian Salceda of this premier municipality has ordered officials of barangays situated along the Philippine National Railways (PNR) route here to conduct information drive among railroad communities to avoid further accidents, following the death of a 21-year old man who was hit by an afternoon train Friday last week.

Salceda has expressed alarm over the cases of railroad mishaps that already claimed two lives in his town since the PNR regular trips linking Camarines Sur and Albay has resumed last year. He also ordered the beefing up of barangay tanods along areas traversed by the railroad tracks. 

The Friday (January 19) incident occurred in Barangay Sugcad in Polangui, while the other case happened on November 6, 2023, involving a 29-year-old epileptic who reportedly fell on the tracks in Barangay Apad, and was ran over by the train. Another case was reported in Naga City on November 20, last year. 

Mayor Salceda has issued an executive order on January 19, directing all the village officials to assign tanods and watchmen to oversee and warn residents during scheduled train trips.

“I also ordered the municipal disaster risk reduction and management office to coordinate with the police to conduct orientation and distribute information campaign materials to the residents near the railroads,” Salceda told media and stressed that the residents should take the measures seriously and avoid staying along the tracks.

The PNR train passes through eight populated villages of Polangui—Agos, Matacon, Lanigay, Sugcad, Magurang, Santicon, Apad, and Basud, a few of these villages are situated at the town center.

The Albay-Camarines Sur PNR train routes resumed operations last year. The route between Naga City in Camarines Sur and Ligao City in Albay began in July 2023 while the route linking Naga to Legazpi City, Albay’s capital and the regional center of Bicol, resumed on December 27, 2023.

The resumption of the PNR Naga-Legazpi train service was strongly endorsed by Albay 2nd District Congressman Joey Sarte Salceda. It is seen to ensure a more active commerce since it provides a cheaper and convenient mode of transport for passengers and merchandise alike between the two leading business hubs in the Bicol Region.

The train ply the Naga-Legazpi twice a day, back and forth, with stopover in Ligao City ferrying more or less 250 passengers per trip.