‘Auring’ affects over 53,000 people in Caraga, Regions 10 & 11 – NDRRMC

Robie de Guzman   •   February 22, 2021   •   368

Tropical Depression Auring has affected a total of 13,816 families or 53,236 persons in the regions of Caraga, Davao, and Northern Mindanao, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) reported Monday.

In its 8 a.m. situation report, the NDRRMC said that 12,825 families or 49,236 persons of the total affected individuals are currently staying in 308 evacuation centers while others sought shelter with their relatives.

A total of 16,059 families or 59,170 persons were pre-emptively evacuated in Regions 7, 8, 10, and Caraga.

A total of 179 houses were damaged in the provinces of Surigao del Norte and Surigao del Sur due to the impact of the storm, the agency said.

Five roads and one bridge were reported affected in Regions 8, 11 and Caraga. Two of the affected roads were already passable, the NDRRMC said.

Due to the inclement weather, a total of 40 domestic flights of the Philippine Airlines were cancelled from Friday, February 19 to Monday, February 22.

A total of 2,931 passengers, 857 rolling cargoes, and six vessels were also stranded in ports in Regions 7 and 8 after sea trips were suspended due to the storm.

The NDRRMC also noted that the province of Negros Oriental has suspended classes and work in government on Saturday and Sunday.

Tacloban City also announced the suspension of classes and work in government on Monday while the municipality of Calatrava in Romblon canceled work on Monday, the agency said.

Dam experts draft strategic plan on dam safety

Marje Pelayo   •   June 23, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The National Dam Safety Committee is working on a systematic process of releasing water in dams across the country.

Such planning will prevent damage to lives and properties brought about by immense flooding due to releasing of water from these massive structures.

“Ang ginagawa natin ngayon ay masigurado na mas maaga, mas prepared ang communities para sa paghahanda at pagtugon doon sa kahit anong emergency na maaaring maganap in case na merong malakas na pag-ulan, mapuno ang dam at kailanganing magpalabas ng tubig,” said Mark Timbal, Spokesperson of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC).

Currently, a strategic plan is being drafted which includes a protocol on the releasing of water in dams.

This will also strengthen information drives to prepare local government units and communities that will be affected prior to the water releasing.

“Kapag sinabi ng dam na nasa ganitong lebel na yung patubig natin so maiintindihan na ng lahat ng stakeholders na: “Ok. Ibig sabihin nya eto na yung susunod na mangyayari. Ito na yung susunod na gagawin natin,” Timbal said.

The official revealed that plans are underway for the crafting of the National Dam Safety Act which would be submitted to Congress.

Part of the plan is the maintenance and prevention of cracks and damages in the structure of dams or in case they do, the government would be able to respond immediately.

The National Dam Safety Committee was created in February this year for the purpose of preventing a repeat of the Cagayan-Isabela flood last year.

Timbal said the committee will be headed by the National Irrigation Administration (NIA), the National Power Corporation (NAPOCOR), the National Water Resources Board (NWRB).

Affiliate agencies in the projects include the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), the Office of the Civil Defense (OCD), and the Department of Agriculture (DA).

Regional Dam Safety Committees were also established, being first-hand witnesses of the situations in dams.

21 cases of COVID-19 variants detected in Caraga — DOH

Marje Pelayo   •   June 9, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Health (DOH) Center for Health Development-Caraga reported 21 cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) variants in the region.

This is based on the latest results of Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS) received from the University of the Philippines-Philippine Genome Center.

Of the samples sent, 13 samples tested positive for B.1.351 (first detected in South Africa), seven for B.1.1.7 (first detected in the UK) and one for P.3 (first detected in the Philippines).

The confirmed B.1.351 cases are locals of the following areas:
Bislig City (7)
Lianga, Surigao del Sur (4)
Cortes, Surigao del Sur (1)
Tandag City (1).

Meanwhile, the confirmed B.1.1.7 cases are from the following areas:
Barobo, Surigao del Sur (2)
Butuan City (2)
Esperanza, Agusan del Sur (1)
Lianga, Surigao del Sur (1)
Madrid, Surigao del Sur (1).

The confirmed P.3 variant case is a resident of Tandag City.

Initial investigation showed that among these 21 variant cases, 13 have no travel history outside their area and eight are close contacts of previously confirmed cases.

Currently, out of the 21, eighteen (18 ) are already asymptomatic and back to their normal daily routine, while one is still recovering at home.

Two cases with the B.1.351 variant died while admitted in the hospital – one (1) from Bislig City and another from Cortes, Surigao del Sur.

Concerned local health authorities are currently implementing the mandatory quarantine and control measures including rigorous tracing of the 1st to 3rd generation close contacts and re-swabbing of confirmed cases with COVID-19 variants

“With the increasing cases and continuous emergence of COVID-19 variants of concern in the region, we are appealing to the Caraganons to strictly adhere to the health protocols and minimum public health standards,” said DOH Caraga Regional Director Cesar Cassion.

“We also strongly encourage immediate vaccine uptake once the vaccines are available to your respective priority eligible group. Let us remember that by following these health measures, transmission across population and further mutation of COVID-19 can be prevented. So, let us continue to be vigilant and work together to end this pandemic,” he added.

Death toll due to TS Dante rises to 6 – NDRRMC

Robie de Guzman   •   June 4, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The number of fatalities due to the onslaught of Tropical Storm Dante has climbed to six, while three others were reported missing, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) said Friday.

In its latest situational report, the NDRRMC said two persons were also reported injured. The casualties were recorded in Regions 6, 7, 8, 11, 12, and MIMAROPA.

A total of 12,260 families or 55,226 individuals in 177 barangays were affected by Dante’s onslaught. Of this tally,  4,439 families or 16,680 persons are currently taking shelter in 140 evacuation sites.

The NDRRMC said a total of 23 road sections and four bridges were affected in Calabarzon, Caraga, and Regions 7, 8, 11, and 12. As of Friday, 2 roads and 3 bridges remained unpassable.

A total of 12 houses sustained damage due to the effects of the storm.

The NDRRMC said power interruptions were experienced in 18 provinces in Regions 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, MIMAROPA, and Caraga while 2 provinces in Region 8 are still experiencing communication network interruption.

Due to the cancellation of sea travel during Dante’s onslaught, 2,085 passengers, 691 rolling cargoes, 46 vessels, and 4 motorbancas were stranded in various ports in the country.

Twenty-six ports, on the other hand, have resumed operations.

Tropical Storm Dante left a total amount of P14,603,719 worth of agricultural damage, and P53,730,000 damage to infrastructure in parts of Visayas and Mindanao, the NDRRMC said.

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