Sunday , June 24, 2018

Hundreds stranded in Bacolod floods; forced evacuation ordered

HOURS of heavy downpour brought by low pressure area triggered flooding in some areas of Bacolod City Friday night.

As of 1 a.m. Saturday, Mayor Evelio Leonardia said that no casualty was reported.

He said the heavy downpour since Friday afternoon has caused waist-deep floods in Barangays 39, 40, Mandalagan, Singcang-Airport, and Taculing.

Water level also reportedly went up in Barangays Pahanocoy and Alijis.

There were also reports of neck-deep waters in some areas.

Along Lacson Street in front of Robinsons Place Bacolod, the flood was mostly waist-deep as well as on Araneta Street across Gaisano Grand mall.

Hundreds were stranded in these areas, including workers and customers, who were on their way home mostly between 8 p.m. and 9 p.m.

The floods also caused heavy traffic from corner B.S. Aquino Drive to Lacson Street in Mandalagan area.

Some areas also experienced power interruption.

Leonardia said trucks of the City Government’s contracted garbage hauler were utilized to pick up commuters.

“The priority (for them) right now is to help the stranded passengers,” he added.

Leonardia said the flood waters overflowed from the river. “It came from the mountains," he said.

Affected residents were forced to seek refuge in public schools and other temporary shelters.

Leonardia said it is “very unusual” (for the waters to quickly rise), as he attributed it to climate change.

“It is a worldwide phenomenon,” he added.

As of 11:30 p.m., Leonardia had ordered the residents of danger zones and low-lying areas to evacuate as pre-emptive measure for the 12 a.m. high tide that may trigger further flooding.

Meanwhile, the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Division of Negros Occidental reported that eight localities were also affected by flooding.

These are Sipalay City, Bago City, Talisay City, La Carlota City, Hinobaan, Murcia, Binalbagan, and Pontevedra.