June 21, 2008
Construction halt ordered at Hanjin Subic Bay yard
The Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) has ordered Hanjin Construction Corp. Ltd. to halt its operations at the Hanjin Heavy Industries & Construction Philippines Inc. shipyard.
The order was issued on Friday after the third worker fatality at the site in nine days.
It brought to 12 the number of worker deaths at the facility since it began operations in 2006.
"The [safety] situation at the shipyard has become alarming," SBMA administrator Armand Arreza said, according to local media reports.
He said HCCL was served the cease-and-desist order at 6 p.m. on Friday, two hours after a hanjin Construction employee was hit and killed by a steel frame that collapsed due to strong winds. Four other workers were injured.
Thus far the order only applies to HCCL activities and the yard is proceeding with preparations for the July 4 inauguration of its first ship. President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is scheduled to attend the event.
However, media reports quote Arreza as saying Hanjin must comply with SBMA's occupational health and safety requirements within 30 days, or "we will suspend their operations, not just construction activities, but also shipyard operations."