Antique town uses coco coir as road ramp sanitizers

Callan BEC Livelihood Association President Henry R. Riomalos (left) turns over road ramps to Sebaste Municipal Sanitary Officer Elalyn Jara (center) and Kagawad Joseph Martin (right) of Brgy. Idio, Sebaste, Antique on May 4, 2020.

Creativity and entrepreneurship always together.

In Antique province, locals and civic groups responded to calls of bayanihan to curb the spread of COVID -19.

The province has consistently produced examples of community industry initiatives.

The Callan Basic Ecclesial Community (BEC) Livelihood Association, a homegrown association in Brgy. Callan in Sebaste, Antique, saw an opportunity to help by producing road ramps made of coco fibers covered in fish net.

The group initially produced ramp mats made of geonets and coco fibers. These are then soaked in solutions to disinfect the tires of vehicles passing major roads in the municipality of Sebaste.

In producing these road ramps, the members processed matured coconut husk through a decorticating machine. The husks were beaten and crushed to separate the coir fiber from the husk.

Association president Henry R. Riomalos narrated how the group came up with innovative products to support the town amid the crisis.

Municipal Sanitary Inspector Elalyn Jara pours disinfectants on the road ramps at the isolation facility in Sebaste High School. (Photos by H.J. Riomalos and G. Florentino)

Riomalos said that the first batch of road ramps was unable to withstand the tires of big vehicles, lasting only three days.

The group switched to coco fiber-based mats which are tougher.

Riomalos said they started improving the ramp design by using fishnets filled with coco fiber and donated the first batch last April 23.

As of May 5, total of 10 road ramps were already turned over to the municipality.

These were then deployed to the municipal borders of Sebaste, and in the isolation facility at Sebaste High School.

The Callan Basic Ecclesial Community (BEC) Livelihood Association is a beneficiary of Sebaste LGU through the Shared Service Facility (SSF) on Coco Based Processing of the DTI which aims to enable micro, small and medium enterprises to increase their productivity and to make them more competitive by giving them access to better technologies and more sophisticated equipment.

Presently, the association is producing more road ramps to be given to other municipalities.