Creation of Dam Committee now under discussion in NDRRMC — Usec. Solidum

Marje Pelayo   •   November 23, 2020   •   981

MANILA, Philippines — The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) is currently discussing the creation of a committee that will focus on dam operations in the country.

Ang usapan sa [What’s been discussed in the] NDRRMC during the last emergency meeting ay magkaroon ng isang kumite na permanente na tumingin talaga sa issue ng [is the creation of a committee that will permanently address the issues in] dam safety operations,” Science and Technology Undersecretary Renato Solidum confirmed in an interview with UNTV.

The creation of such a specific committee is what the NDRRMC sees as a solution to ensure the safe operation of dams across the country in consideration of the surrounding communities.

The NDRRMC is composed of agencies concerned with disasters and emergencies. 

Following the deluge in Cagayan and Isabela provinces caused by Typhoon Ulysses, Interior Secretary Eduardo Año proposed the transfer of dam management to the NDRRMC, especially the control on when to release water during the onset of a typhoon.

Many see the release of water from Magat Dam as one reason that worsened the scenario in the said provinces during the typhoon.

Solidum said the proposed committee would not only oversee the releasing of water in dams but every aspect that would ensure dam safety in all forms of disaster such as earthquakes.

The official clarified, however, that the expertise of agencies currently managing the dams like the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) and dam operators will still be utilized even after dam management is transferred to the NDRRMC. 

What needs further improvement, Solidum said, is risk communication especially the aspect of giving warning signals to communities on potential threats of the dams.

“When it comes to dam operation, ang makakatulong dito yung [what will help is the] further enhancement of communication down to everyone na magamit siguro yung mga [with the use of] available text blasts o ano pang magandang pamamaraan na ginagawa [or other available means that can be utilized],” he stressed recommending early evacuation of residents from areas most prone to disasters once the PAGASA announces the need to evacuate.

Meanwhile, the National Power Corporation (NAPOCOR) is now planning to conduct an assessment in rivers and other waterways to determine how time changed their physical features such as their size or capacity.

The NAPOCOR is also considering pushing through with the creation of a National Dam Safety Program (NDSP).

“Mayroon na kaming naging initial na coordination dyan sa NDSP at tuloy-tuloy naman iyon [We had an initial coordination on the NDSP and it’s been ongoing],” confirmed NAPOCOR Dam Management Department Manager Conrado Sison Jr.

“Ang aim is magkaroon tayo ng isang entity or bagay na mag-address nga itong problemang ito [The aim is to have an entity that will address all these problems],” he added. MNP (with reports from Rey Pelayo)

Reported deaths due to Typhoon Odette climbs to 400 – NDRRMC

Robie de Guzman   •   December 31, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The number of reported deaths due to the onslaught of Typhoon Odette has exceeded 400, the National Disaster Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) said Friday.

In its latest report, the NDRRMC recorded 405 fatalities, while 82 persons were reported missing and 1,147 were injured.

The typhoon affected a total of 4,457,846 individuals or 1,139,148 families in 11 regions.

Areas affected include Palawan, Negros Occidental, Bohol, Cebu, Negros Oriental, Southern Leyte, Leyte, Dinagat Islands, and Surigao del Norte.

A total of 532,096 houses were damaged during the typhoon with an estimated cost of P28,163,718, the NDRRMC said.

The damage to infrastructure was pegged at ₱ 16,715,368,482.11 while the cost of damage to agriculture was estimated at P6,683,206,250.24.

The NDRRMC also noted that the power supply has been restored in 205 out of 284 cities and municipalities that experienced power outages following the typhoon’s onslaught.

Seventeen areas in MIMAROPA, Region 10, CARAGA, and CARAGA are still without water supply.

Meanwhile, telecommunication services have been restored in 79 out of 165 cities and municipalities affected by the calamity, the NDRRMC said.

Reported deaths due to Odette nears 400 – NDRRMC

Robie de Guzman   •   December 28, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Nearly 400 people were reported killed due to the onslaught of Typhoon Odette, latest data from the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) showed.

In an update released on Tuesday, the NDRRMC said the death toll has climbed to 397.

The number of missing persons also rose to 83 from Monday’s 64 while a total of 1,147 people have been reported injured.

The typhoon affected a total of 4,235,400 persons or 1,082,910 families in 11 regions.

The NDRRMC also reported a total of 508,785 damaged houses due to Odette, with an estimated cost of P28,163,718.

Around 325 infrastructures were also damaged due to the typhoon, amounting to P16,715,334,982.11.

The typhoon’s estimated cost of damage to agriculture was at P5,342,538,557.25.

The agency said that power supply has been restored in 161 out of 284 areas that experienced power outage in MIMAROPA, Region 6, Region 7, Region 8, Region 9, Region 10, Region 11, CARAGA, and Bangsamoro region.

A total of 18 cities/ municipalities are still without water supply while 371 areas faced issues in telecommunications.

Deaths due to Typhoon Odette now at 389 – NDRRMC

Robie de Guzman   •   December 27, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The reported number of fatalities due to the onslaught of Typhoon Odette has climbed to 389, latest data from the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) said.

In its report released on Monday, the NDRRMC said 64 people are reported missing while 1,146 were injured.

The typhoon affected a total of 4,204,601 persons or 1,074,169 families in 11 regions.

The NDRRMC also reported a total of 506,404 damaged houses due to Odette, with an estimated cost of P28,163,718.

Around 276 infrastructures were also damaged due to the typhoon, amounting to P16,711,209,182.11.

The agency said that power supply has been restored in 154 out of 284 areas that experienced power outage in MIMAROPA, Region 6, Region 7, Region 8, Region 9, Region 10, Region 11, CARAGA, and Bangsamoro region.

A total of 18 cities/ municipalities experienced water supply outage while 371 areas faced issues in telecommunications.

The typhoon’s estimated cost of damage to agriculture was at P5,315,842,606.17.

A total of 334 cities/municipalities in MIMAROPA, Region 6, Region 8, CARAGA had declarations of State of Calamity, the NDRRMC said.

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