BAGUIO CITY — Syringes, dextrose bottles, vials and biological waste found polluting a creek in Tuba town, Benguet province, last week, may have been mixed with soil dug up near a Baguio hospital where a road expansion project was being undertaken.
The waste was mixed with gravel hauled to a 5,000-square-meter private lot that slipped to the creek at Barangay Taloy Sur in Tuba on July 9 after strong rains.
The private hauler, identified as Onofre Calam-ang, began cleaning up the creek.
But Calam-ang and the hospital where the soil came from had been charged by the police with improper disposal of medical waste in the Benguet prosecutor’s office.
Dextrose bottles, syringes and needles of various sizes, empty fluid packs, vials, rubber tubes and surgical refuse were found at the dumping site owned by a Taloy Sur resident, according to a report from Chief Insp. James Acod, Tuba police chief.
Police confirmed that the medical waste washed up at the creek that flowed to Nabjeng River at Barangay Tabaan Norte in Tuba.
The river is the main contributory to the Tapuakan River in Pugo town in La Union province.
Tuba police said the lot owner allowed the hauler to dump soil and gravel at his property in June, provided the soil was clean.
He said he learned about the medical waste on July 10 and had since forbidden the hauler from bringing in more wastes.
But the police were told that the hauler continued to dump materials at the property “when he was not around or at night when nobody was guarding the area.”
Police said medical waste was also found in a pile of soil at the compound of an aggregates company where the hauler also dumped soil excavated from the Baguio hospital.