Heavy rains leave 7 dead in Eastern Visayas

TACLOBAN CITY — At least seven people died in Eastern Visayas due to flooding and landslide caused by heavy rains in the past four days, the Office the Civil Defense (OCD) reported on Tuesday.

OCD Regional Director Edgar Posadas said in an interview that of the seven fatalities, four were from this city, who were killed when a collapsed wall and landslide debris buried them Saturday night in Quarry district.

The rescue team completed the retrieval of victims’ bodies on Monday night.

In Mondragon, Northern Samar, a man driving a motorcycle in a major road was buried by mudslides Saturday noon. In Catarman town, the provincial capital, electric shock carried by flood water electrocuted a man on Sunday.

In Jaro, Leyte, a man drowned on Sunday when he was swept away by a strong current as he tried to cross a raging river.

Posadas, the head of the Regional Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council, was saddened to receive reports of deaths despite absence of typhoon.

He said that concerned national government agencies and local government units have done their part in disseminating warnings, but some people just ignored weather advisories.

“For instance, in Tacloban, seven houses occupied by seven families were covered by mudslides, but there are only four casualties. Other families heeded the warning from the local government to move to evacuation centers and they survived,” Posadas told the Philippine News Agency (PNA).

He asked people to be cautious not only of typhoons, tropical storms, tropical depressions and low pressure areas, but other weather disturbances as well, considering the damage these natural disasters bring.

“Sometimes rains brought by cold fronts and northeast monsoons last longer than downpour caused by typhoons,” he added.

Since Saturday, Eastern Visayas region has been experiencing moderate to heavy rains due to tail end of a cold front.

Weather disturbances, according to Posadas, is expected in the region considering its geographic location facing the Pacific Ocean in the eastern portion. Sarwell Meniano/PNA-northboundasia.com