PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Palawan, March 20 (PIA) -- Puerto Princesa City Philippine National Police (PNP) has explained that the blast at the Sabang wharf yesterday was caused by a box of cheap China-made lighters and a soda bottle stuffed with ammonium nitrate placed inside a sack and left for hours under the sun.
Police Superindent Abad H. Osit, Chief of the City PNP clarified details of yesterday’s blast at the Sabang wharf in this morning’s press conference at the police station.
A blast was reported to have occurred at about 11 a.m. yesterday at the vicinity of the parking lot of the PPUR Coordinating Center at the Sabang wharf.
The blast caused minimal damage but plenty of apprehensions and misplaced conclusions in this city experiencing an unprecedented increase in tourists arrivals.
The area was cordoned off by police authorities assigned in the Sabang Police Station and bomb experts were dispatched immediately to the scene to investigate the cause of the blast.
Based on the initial investigation, Osit said that the sack containing the lighters, some wires, and a bottle containing powder substance was presumably left by a person engaged in illegal blast fishing.
He said that this incidence was an isolated case and is not related to any security-threat activities. The powder substance will be brought to Manila for further analysis and identification.
Sabang is the jump off point to the world famous Puerto Princesa Underground River (PPUR) and the southwestern barangays of San Vicente town where due to its isolation and distance are enclaves of illegal fishing activites.
Sabang is located approximately 75 kilometers from the center of Puerto Princesa City. Tours to the PPUR went on as usual yesterday. (TBO/VSM-PIA4B Palawan)