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Water interruptions loom as NWRB cuts allocation for Metro Manila

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Friday, June 14th, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The National Water Resources Board (NWRB) has reduced the allocation for Metro Manila amid the continued drop in water levels at Angat Dam, which is the metropolis’ main water source, an official said Friday.

The NWRB lowered the allocation for Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) to 46 cubic meters per second (CBS) for the month of June from the average 48 CBS last month.

NWRB director Servillano David said they were forced to cut down Metro Manila’s water allocation after water level at Angat dam dipped further. The latest water level is at 163.66 meters, which is 16 meters below the normal operating level of 180.

David said the current water level is expected to go down further in the coming days and may breach the critical level of 160 meters if there will be no enough rain at the Angat watershed area.

“Sa ganoong level po at 160 meters, magkakaroon na ng isyu in terms of availability ng supply,” he said.

“Sa ngayon bumababa pa rin siya despite the pronouncement ng PAGASA na parating na ang onset ng rainy season. ‘Yung mga pag-ulan na inaasahan natin dun sa Angat water shed ay hindi po dumarating,” he added.

Looming water service interruptions

With the dwindling water level at the Angat dam, consumers are told to brace for possible water interruptions.

East zone water concessionaire Manila Water Co. said it is already trying to manage its supply by implementing water interruptions during off-peak hours.

“Ang ginagawa lang natin ngayon, patuloy ang operational adjustment natin. Pero in the event na hindi na kaya ng sistema natin na mag-provide pa ng additonal water supply, talagang magbabawas tayo,” said Jeric Sevilla, spokesperson for Manila Water.

West Zone concessionaire Maynilad Water Services Inc., meanwhile, said it also implemented water interruptions from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. when water usage is usually low.

“During night time para po mabigyan kami ng pagkakataon na ma-refill ‘yung aming reservoirs para during peak hours naman po sa araw ay hindi po mararamdaman ng aming mga customer itong pagbaba ng supply sa Metro Manila,” said Ronald Padua, who heads Maynilad operations.

Water concessionaires said the limited water supply will especially affect consumers in elevated areas.

Consumers are advised to contact hotlines and social media accounts of Maynilad and Manila Water for further details on water service interruptions.

The NWRB also called on the public anew to use water responsibly and wisely, to store rainwater and to recycle wastewater for other purposes. (with details from Joan Nano)

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More water service interruptions as Angat Dam’s level remains below critical

by Marje Pelayo   |   Posted on Monday, July 15th, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Water level in Angat Dam remains below the critical level on Monday (July 15) despite rainshowers in the past days.

As of 6:00 a.m., Angat Dam has 158.74 meters, still below the critical level of 160 meters and way below its normal operating level of 180 meters.

On its Facebook page, concessionaire Manila Water on Monday announced continuous implementation of rotational water interruptions due to the current state of Angat Dam.

“Ang mga service interruption na ito ay ginagawa para maipamahagi ang limitadong suplay ng tubig sa lahat ng aming mga customer, dahil nananatiling mas mababa ang alokasyon mula sa NWRB dala ng muling pagbaba ng antas ng Angat Dam,” Manila Water said on its post.

(This service interruptions aim to evenly distribute the limited supply of water to all our customers because allocation from NWRB remains low due to below critical level of water in Angat Dam.)

See Manila Water’s list of service interruptions here.

Meanwhile, Maynilad also said it was cutting water supply as it continues to fine-tune its distribution given the reduced raw water releases from Angat Dam.

“We encourage our affected customers to store enough water when supply is available,” Maynilad posted.

See Maynilad’s updated list of water service interruptions here.

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Metro Manila shake drill set on July 27 – MMDA

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Friday, July 12th, 2019

FILE: PNP National Headquarters participated in the 1st Nationwide Simultaneous Earthquake Drill (NSED) on April 21, 2016. Response and Rescue operations were also done during the activity. (Photo: PNP FB Page)

MANILA, Philippines – The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) is set to hold an earthquake drill, dubbed as Metro Manila Shake Drill, on July 27.

MMDA General Manager Jojo Garcia said this year’s shake drill will start as early as four in the morning, to be signaled by the sounding of an alarm.

“For this year, it will be done on a weekend and at almost the break of dawn when most Metro Manila residents are at home and asleep,” he said.

“We are doing this to prepare everyone to minimize damage and loss of life,” he added.

Garcia said they intentionally scheduled the drill very early in the morning so the public can participate.

Shake drills in the past years were done during daytime and even on rush hours, with last year leveling up to an unannounced, rush hour daytime drill.

“We want to test the response capabilities and preparedness of LGUs and the private sector as earthquake may occur anytime,” Garcia said.

The MMDA official added that during the shake drill, they will mobilize agency employees, Metro local government units and other groups to demonstrate their contingency plans in case strong earthquake hits the metropolis.

MMDA Chairman Danilo Lim, also the head of the Metro Manila Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (MMDRRMC), will visit city halls and designated emergency operation centers in the metro on the day of the drill.

Different emergency scenarios will also be staged at city hall offices, establishments, communities, businesses, and households.

“We expect more active and full participation of the private sector as government’s partner in disaster and emergency preparedness and response for Metro Manila,” said Garcia.

During the drill, the agency will also practice the deployment of personnel to designated emergency operation centers located at the four quadrants in Metro Manila.

The MMDA said the northern quadrant will use the Veterans Memorial Medical Center Golf Course as evacuation camp while the western quadrant will use the Intramuros Golf Course.

The eastern quadrant will use the LRT-2 Santolan Depot while the southern quadrant will use the Villamor Golf Course.

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Angat Dam water level dips further below critical level

by Aileen Cerrudo   |   Posted on Thursday, July 11th, 2019

As of 6:00 a.m. on Thursday (July 11), the water level in Angat Dam has dipped lower than the critical level at 159.93 meters.

This is lower compared to the 160.30 meters recorded on Wednesday (July 10).

The National Water Resources Board (NWRB) reduced the amount of  water allocated to Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) from 46 cubic meters per second (cms) to 36 cms.

Meanwhile, Maynilad and Manila Water continue to implement water service interruptions.—AAC

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