Ferry from Surigao reportedly sinks off Southern Leyte

SURIGAO CITY (MindaNews/13 September) – A ferry carrying 58 passengers and 13 land-based vehicles bound for Liloan in Southern Leyte from the Lipata port here Saturday noon has remained missing as of 10 p.m., Alfonso Caturla, commander of the Port Police here,

Caturla said the ferry “can no longer be traced and located  and is now being searched by Maharlika IV and Millennium  I.

ILL-FATED SHIP.  M/V Maharlika II anchored off Lipata port in Surigao City in this file photo taken Dec. 17, 2013. The Roll-on/ roll off ferry was undergoing repairs near the port when this photo was taken.  MindaNews file photo by Froilan Gallardo
ILL-FATED SHIP. M/V Maharlika II anchored off Lipata port in Surigao City in this file photo taken Dec. 17, 2013. The Roll-on/ roll off ferry was undergoing repairs near the port when this photo was taken. MindaNews file photo by Froilan Gallardo

SunStar, in a report datelined Manila, said the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) was conducting search and rescue operations “after a passenger roll-on-roll-off vessel sank off the vicinity of San Ricardo, Southern Leyte, Saturday night.”

The SunStar report quoted Commander Armando Balilo, Coast Guard Public Affairs chief as saying the ferry was carrying “56 passengers aboard, including two children and 26 crew members.

Caturla said MV Maharlika 2 left the port of LIpata for Liloan in Southern Leyte at 11:30 a.m.

The trip to Liloan usually takes only four hours.

He said that as of 8:40 p.m., the ferry was last “seen floating at vicinity of Pintuyan, Leyte.”

According to maritime-connector.com, Maharlika 2 was built in 1984. (Roel Catoto / MindaNews)