Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Heavy rains flood Luzon Island

My worst fear came on Tuesday when heavy rains continuously pounded most parts of central and northern Luzon in the Philippines. Hence, heavy flooding had paralyzed Metro Manila and other outlying areas.

Consequently, the national government had ordered the suspension of classes in all levels and workers in public and the private sectors were instructed to go home. Likewise, many vehicles were stuck along the roads and highways. Many people were stranded as the vehicles they're riding got stuck along the flooded highways.

Weather officials said the situation was a repeat of a strong typhoon named "Ondoy"  which hit the country in 2009.

Surprisingly, the heavy rains were not brought by any  typhoon at all. Instead, there was another typhoon that was spotted very far from the Philippines' area of responsibility. But it's already closing in on Taiwan, weather officials said.

The Philippines Weather Bureau confirmed in a broadcast invterview that  the heavy downpours will subside Wednesday. By then, the weather is expected to improve all over the Luzon area, especially in Metro Manila where millions of people are now staying at many evacuation centers scattered all over the metropolis.

Worst hit in the Metro Manila area was Marikina City, Quezon City and most parts of Rizal province. In Marikina City, the water level at the Marikina River exceeded the normal level, hitting at least 22 feet as of Tuesday night. Provident Village, one of the exclusive subdivisions in Marikina City, was badly flooded, same as when typhoon Ondoy hit the country. Some of the evacuees temporarily stayed with their relatives nearby while others stayed at the evacuation centers for their safety.

According to media reports, many of the rescuers were experiencing difficulties saving those stranded at the roofs of many of the houses that were submerged  under water due to lack of rubber boats. It was good to learn that President Aquino ordered the Office of the Ombudsman to release the rubber boats in its premises for use by the rescuers in areas where the water level was high. These rubber boats serve as evidences against police officials who are facing criminal cases at the Office of the Ombudsman.

The national government cannot do it alone. Funds needed for the procurement for more rubber boats are impossible to meet due to lack of funds. Knowing how complicated it is for Congress to allocate these funds for this purpose, it is only necessary that some non-government organizations (NGOs) should lead the way in espousing for a collective way to raise more funds for disaster operations, especially the purchase of more rubber boats.

I wouldn't be surprised why a flood of this magnitude keep coming to back to sow destructions. Until the people have learned to observe discipline in the disposal of their garbage at home, many people will continue to experience floods that are considered destructive in nature. When the cities' drainages are clogged with all sorts of garbage, what can we expect?

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