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Camaligan hanging bridge faces delay due to failure to submit clearance

SUSPENDED WORK OF HANGING BRIDGE. The completed anchors of the Camaligan hanging bridge awaiting for the deck, hangers, and cables to be constructed. PHOTO BY PAULO DS. PAPA

CAMALIGAN, Camarines Sur --- The failure of the municipal engineer here to submit the required navigation clearance to the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) has caused delay in the delayed completion of the hanging bridge here.

The unfinished hanging bridge is intended to connect the town proper in barangay Sto. Domingo with that of barangay San Francisco located across the Bicol River.

At present, small boats are the only means of transportation ferrying residents especially students from both sides of the river.

Engr. Fernando Eduardo, Camaligan municipal engineer said the PCG Camaligan substation, under its previous chief, already allowed the construction of the hanging bridge, but due to change of leadership, the local government unit was required to secure the needed clearances from from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).

Eduardo said that the previous PCG Camaligan substation chief did not require them to submit the clearances or certificates after they presented the construction plan for the bridge.

He said the DENR already issued the certificate of non-coverage (CNC), while the DPWH has given the go signal to continue the construction.

LTJG. Bernardo Pagador Jr., the present PCG substation chief, said the municipal engineer’s office has not yet submitted the navigational clearance for the bridge as required by law.

Pagador said, it is part of the PCG mandate to require from any person or entity who plans to build a structure across a river a navigational clearance certificate.

He said the construction was supposed to continue last month as the clearance was already complied with. “Compliant sana sila sa measures pero yung papel nalang yung kulang,” he said.

Under PCG’s Memorandum Circular No. 01-14 titled “Navigational Clearance for Road Bridges and Other Structures over Navigable Inland Waters,” the construction, establishments, alteration or modification of all road bridges and other structures over navigable waters such as bays, rivers, and lakes has to be referred to the PCG for issuance of appropriate clearance confirming that the structure would not be hazardous to navigation in order to ensure safe passage of all vessels and watercraft.

The bridge, according to Eduardo, has a span of more than 50 meters with a height of more than the highest tide of the Bicol River.

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