9 areas in Luzon under state of calamity-A A +A
Wednesday, August 8, 2012
MANILA (Updated 7:13 a.m.) -- Nine areas in Luzon that suffered heavy floods due to continuous rains on Tuesday have been placed under a state of calamity.
The declaration of state of calamity would facilitate the use of funds to aid affected families and expedite rehabilitation efforts.
As of Tuesday evening, the state of calamity was declared in the provinces of Bataan, Laguna, Pampanga and Zambales; Cainta and San Mateo, both of Rizal province; and Valenzuela City, Malabon City, and Muntinlupa City, all of Metro Manila.
Metro Manila and other parts of the country were already saturated from Typhoon Gener (international codename: Saola) last week that battered Manila and the north for several days before blowing away Friday. That storm was responsible for at least 53 deaths.
But Manila's weather bureau said a separate tropical storm off eastern China had intensified monsoon rains in the Philippines and was responsible for the latest deluge, which began Monday night and did not let up until Tuesday morning.
The flooding also caused the deaths of nine persons, identified as Jethro Baylon, Jessica Baylon, Jayvee Baylon, Cecilia Baylon, Jayson Baylon, Joshua Castulo, Jezelle Joy Baylon, Jonica Castulo and Jonathan Castulo.
Data collated by the Project NOAH (Nationwide Operational Assessment of Hazards) of the Department of Science and Technology showed rains dumped by the southwest monsoon in 22 hours reached 472 millimeters, higher than Tropical Storm Ondoy's 455 millimeters.
However, Ondoy's intensity was still higher because it released 300 millimeters in just six hours, the NOAH said.
The state weather bureau said the current flooding was not as severe and weather may start to improve later this week.
Work resumes Wednesday
With this, Malacañang announced that work in National Government offices and private sector resumed Wednesday.
"On the basis of the best available information at the present time, and the recommendation and the forecast of Pagasa (Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration), the Office of the President will not issue a Memorandum Circular suspending work for government or the private sector today, August 8," Presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said in a press statement.
Lacierda, however, said those agencies that have earlier declared work suspension will not be covered by the resumption.
"The declarations of some national agencies, such as the Commission on Audit, suspending work today, and announcements made by local governments concerning the suspension of work and classes in their jurisdictions, however, remain in force," he said.
The Palace official said occasional intense rainfall has been observed from 8 p.m. Tuesday night to 1 a.m. Wednesday, but it is projected to lessen within the day.
He noted that even as the situation remains of concern for citizens affected by the rain and flooding, "it is imperative that we begin returning to normalcy as soon as possible."
"This requires government workers to report to their offices to continue, and accelerate, efforts at rescue, relief, and rehabilitation. The private sector, too, needs to return to work," he said.
He likewise said that goods and services must resume so as to speed up the repair of damaged infrastructure, the circulation of goods and supplies throughout the metropolitan area and other affected regions.
"As we emerge from this emergency, let us bear in mind the many thousands of our countrymen who will continue to need our assistance and support.
"We call on our fellow citizens to continue to demonstrate the empathy, sympathy, cooperation and can-do attitude that have served us so well during this emergency," he said.
He called on the public to continue to remain vigilant, and aware of alerts and advisories from the authorities, concerning the weather.
Meanwhile, classes in all levels in Metro Manila are still suspended.
Classes are also suspended in nearby provinces of Bulacan, Pampanga, Tarlac, Laguna, Batangas, and Zambales. (Jill Beltran/PNA/Sunnex)