Security tightened for Undas » Manila Bulletin News

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By Kier Edison C. Belleza

THE EXODUS BEGINS – Two days before All Saints’ Day, sea travelers were already flocking to Cebu City’s Pier Terminal One. (Juan Carlo de Vela)

Cebu City – Security at Cebu’s seaports, airports, bus terminals and cemeteries has been beefed up for All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day.

Commander Jerome Cayabyab of the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) Cebu Station said its maritime unit is on heightened alert in anticipation of a surge in sea travelers.

The Coast Guard’s search and rescue vessels are also on put on standby.

K9 units were deployed at piers across Cebu province.

Cayabyab did not disclose the number of deployed personnel for security reasons.

“We also have our public assistance desks and medical stations in place,” he said.

The Coast Guard will be on heightened alert until November 6.

The city’s Piers 1 and 3 are two of the province’s busiest docks. The Coast Guard logged over 6,800 passengers on Saturday morning alone.

Coast Guard Deputy Commander John Manuel Alip advised the public to be at the ports at least three hours before departure time and to refrain from bringing with them bladed and sharp objects, which are banned.

Cebu Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO) Chief Baltazar Tribunalo said first-aid stations have been installed at the Cebu South Bus Terminal (CSBT) since last week.

He said a team from the PDRRMO and another from the Provincial Health Office are ready to respond to emergencies.

The terminal expects around 33,000 passengers in the coming days.

Councilor Dave Tumulak, who is also the deputy mayor on police matters, reminded the public to strictly follow security measures, saying that sharp and flammable objects, alcoholic beverages, among others, are not allowed inside cemeteries and memorial parks.

The Police Regional Office (PRO) in Central Visayas has deployed 3,240 policemen to cemeteries in the region.

Superintendent Julian Entoma, chief of the Regional Operations Division, said 900 officers were assigned to Cebu City’s cemeteries, 266 in Mandaue City, 218 in Lapu-Lapu City and 718 in the cities and towns of Cebu province.

Entoma said 587 officers will be guarding cemeteries in Negros Oriental, 562 in Bohol, and 112 in Siquijor.

A number of officers will also be assigned at police detachments that will serve as back-ups should an untoward incident happen, he added.

Police Regional Director Chief Supt. Jose Mario Espino has directed police chiefs to tap force multipliers such as barangay tanods and traffic personnel.

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