Two fishermen drown in abandoned open-pit mine in Rapu-Rapu

LEGAZPI CITY, Philippines – Two fishermen drowned while two farmers were reported missing after they tried to retrieve a submersible pump from an abandoned open-pit mine in Batan Island in Rapu-Rapu, Albay, police said on Tuesday, June 25.

Police Captain Dante Bonafe, acting Rapu-Rapu municipal police chief, said the victims – known only by their nicknames "Kalbo" and "Uwak" – were residents of the island-town of Rapu-Rapu and Tabaco City, respectively. (READ: Rapu-Rapu's fishermen after mining)

Philippine Coast Guard and police personnel recovered the bodies of the two fishermen on Monday afternoon, June 24.

The missing farmers were identified as  Orly Bisco, 40;  and Timoteo Balunzo, 30, both residents of Barangay Calanaga in Batan.  Authorities were still searching for Balunzo and Bisco as of posting.

Bonafe said the site of the incident was an abandoned open-pit mine estimated to be 30 feet deep. The incident was reported to police by a concerned citizen. 

Bonafe said the initial investigation showed that the group went to the open-pit mining site to retrieve the submersible pump which was left by miners when they abandoned the mine. – Rappler.com