Three Filipino residents and an Austrian tourist died after the old Clarin Bridge in Bohol, also known as the Low Bridge, collapsed on Wednesday afternoon.
Governor Art C. Yap, in a live-stream briefing late Wednesday, confirmed the death toll and said 20 more had been rescued.
At least 12 vehicles were found falling into the Lobok River when the bridge collapsed, and three other vehicles recorded on a CCTV camera as they crossed the bridge have yet to be found, Mr Yap said.
The search operation by divers was scheduled to resume in the early hours of Thursday morning.
Mr Yap said respondents had to stop operations after conducting three sets of rescue dives due to heavy rain and currents and muddy water with only one to two feet of visibility.
The diving teams consisted of members of the Philippine Coast Guard, the Bureau of Fire Protection, local emergency responders under TARSIER 117, and members of a private diving group in Panglao.
Among the 12 vehicles that fell were a dump truck, six four-wheelers, three tricycles and two motorbikes.
The bridge, built in the 1970s, was strengthened after it was damaged by a magnitude 7.2 earthquake that struck Bohol in 2013.
Construction of a new bridge began in 2018 and was scheduled to open in the first half of this year.
“Haste is the new bridgeA Weather permitting, it will be passable in two to three days,” Mr. Yap said.
The governor said the incident would be investigated. – MSJ