DAVAO CITY — Continuous rains for several days have caused heavy flooding in some parts of Davao Region and occurrence of landslides in some areas of Davao del Norte, Compostela Valley and Davao Oriental.
Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) forecast as of 5a.m. Tuesday that the eastern sections of Mindanao, particularly the regions of CARAGA and Davao continue to be affected by the tail-end of a cold front.
PAGASA added that cloudy skies with moderate to occasionally heavy rains and thunderstorms may trigger flashfloods and landslides in said areas.
ComVal is inundated
In Compostela Valley, floods had already affected parts of Poblacion of Nabunturan town, including some barangays on Monday.
Governor Jayvee Tyron Uy has suspended classes in all levels in the province since Monday until today, January 24.
Uy also ordered the activation of all disaster risk reduction council operation centers in Compostela Valley from provincial to municipal and barangay levels.
Municipal and barangay operation centers were also required to submit initial and situational reports to the PDRRMC for assistance.
A total of 32 families or 128 individuals were evacuated to the municipal gymnasium of Mawab town on Tuesday due to flooding.
The families came from the villages of Malinawon and Poblacion.
Forty-two families or 161 individuals were also relocated to the evacuation center at the elementary school in Barangay Banagbanag, Montevista town as of 6:45 a.m. on Tuesday due to severe flooding in the area.
Barangay Captain Alex Antibo said the evacuees came from Puroks 2, 5, 6 and 7 in said barangay.
The MDRRMC in Montevista immediately responded by giving the basic needs of the evacuees such as food packs, safe drinking water, and medicines while responders from Montevista Search and Rescue Team (MOSART) are now utilizing big trucks locally called “Sadam” to deliver relief goods and food stuffs to the affected villages.
Antibo added that they are also conducting pre-emptive evacuation to residents living in other flood prone areas.
The main road that connects Banagbanag to the town center of Montevista is no longer passable for light vehicles on Tuesday due to the rising flood.
As of 3:30 p.m. on Monday, 103 families from Green Valley Homes in Poblacion, Compostela town were also evacuated to the municipal gymnasium due to severe flooding.
Other areas affected in Poblacion, Compostela include Puroks 5, 6, 9, 10 and 13, the report added.
An hourly comparative water level monitoring result was provided by the PDRRMC in Compostela Valley on Tuesday morning indicated of continued rise of flood waters in the area.
The data said that as of 11a.m., flood waters in Kalaw Bridge in Nabunturan town was already measured at 6.20 meters on Tuesday from 6.16 meters at 10a.m. and 6.08 meters at 9a.m.
In Montevista town, the water level has already reached 3.69 meters as of 11a.m. from 3.71 meters as of 10a.m. and 3.68 as of 9 a.m.
In Compostela town, the level of flood water remained unchanged at 3.90 meters from 10a.m. to 11a.m. from 3.68 meters as of 9a.m.
Reports of floods were also reported in New Bataan town but no data were received as of this posting.
As of 8a.m. on Tuesday, the PDRRMC in Compostela Valley reported a total of 682 families or 2,020 directly affected by floods from the towns of Nabunturan, Compostela, New Bataan, Montevista and Mawab.
Various relief operations were also conducted to affected barangays by the Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office (PSWDO) and the municipal level social service offices.
Other line agencies of the government also provided support to the on-going relief operations in the province, to include the army, police, fire department, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).
Red Cross and other private groups are also participating in the relief operations, the report added.
Water rising in DavNor
Alert is also up in the province of Davao del Norte, as the water levels of Libuganon River and Saug Rivers are already in critical level as of 4:30 a.m. on Tuesday.
The PDRRMC in the province released its comparative water level monitoring report in major river systems in the area as of 11a.m. on Tuesday.
The report said that water level in Libuganon River slightly went down to 3.8 meters as of 11:40 a.m. from 3.9 meters (9a.m.) and 4.1 meters (7a.m.).
The Lawang water level in Asuncion town is considered in critical level as of 11:40 a.m. on Tuesday with 7.04 meters from 7.00 meters (7a.m.).
Water level in Pagsabangan Bridge in Tagum City is also being watched closely as it increased to 6.93 meters as of 11:40 a.m. from 6.81 meters (9a.m.) and 6.74 meters (7a.m.).
Reports said that all the villages in the town of Kapalong are now affected by flood waters.
Data received revealed that 194 families or 874 individuals are now housed temporarily at the evacuation center of Kapalong College of Agriculture Sciences and Technology.
Roads connecting Kapalong to Tagum City and other towns are no longer passable for light vehicles as of Tuesday morning, reports said.
Meanwhile, the Disaster Response Unit (DRU) of the 60th Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army was activated and has conducted rescue operations in the town of Asuncion.
Army vehicles are also being utilized to evacuate residents from villages to evacuation centers in Asuncion, the report added.
Davao Oriental under a state of calamity
The Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Davao Oriental passed a resolution on Tuesday morning, declaring the whole province under a state of calamity due to continuous rains that resulted to flooding and landslides in the area.
On Monday, the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (PDRRMC) of Davao Oriental recommended to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan to declare the province under a state of calamity with the aim of allowing the local government units to make quick interventions for relief, rehabilitation and reconstruction of the affected areas.
The PDRRMC in the area said a total of 423 hectares of farms were already destroyed by floods, affecting 1,864 farmers in 27 barangays.
The damage to agriculture was already placed at PHP1.7 million, the provincial agriculture office of Davao Oriental reported.
Flash floods and landslides also affected 80 percent of families in four villages in Boston town; 283 households in eight barangays in Baganga; 4,327 families in six barangays in Cateel.
Damage to infrastructures were also reported in the area including the death of three residents from the towns of Caraga and Cateel.
Packing of relief goods at the covered court of the provincial capitol in Davao Oriental started on Monday evening, involving hundreds of volunteers from the provincial government, the military, police and private groups.
In a statement, the information office in the area said the provincial government has secured supply of relief goods to augment food packs available in disaster-stricken municipalities.
Each food pack contains five kilos of rice, three cans of sardines, two cans of corned beef and six sachets of coffee, ready to be transported and handed over to victims.
Over the past few weeks, the province has experienced heavy rains causing floods and landslides in some areas, particularly the towns in the east coast. Damages to properties, livelihoods, crops, and infrastructures, among others, have been reported.
The Provincial Government together with its partners have ensured that the massive aid effort will reach the towns and villages that are in dire need.
Meanwhile, a landslide was reported on Tuesday morning in the town of Lupon, Davao Oriental.
The MDRRMC in the area said the landslide occurred along the Mati-Maragusan Road particularly at Purok Curvada in Sitio Banhawan, Barangay Marayag.
The road is no longer passable to light vehicles, the report added. ALEXANDER LOPEZ/PNA -northboundasia.com