Floods, landslides persist in Northern Mindanao

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Sunday, January 19, 2014


WITH the torrential rains, floods and landslides have turned extensive in the city and in some municipalities in Misamis Oriental.

The prevailing weather condition on Sunday evening compelled the Office of Civil Defense (OCD) and Department of Education (DepEd) to suspend classes in preschool and elementary levels in public and private schools today, January 20.

Around 35 teachers and students were reported stranded at the Mindanao University of Science and Technology (MUST) along C.M. Recto Avenue as the nearby Bitan-ag Creek continued to overflow past 2 p.m. Sunday, the City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (CDRRMC) said.

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The last time the area experienced flooding was during the onslaught of Typhoon Pablo in December 2012.

Flooding also caused vehicles to bog down in the middle of major thoroughfares in the city, the CDRRMC reported.

Landslides at barangays Carmen, Camaman-an, and Calaanan were reported on Sunday.

The city put up 17 evacuation centers that now shelter around 783 families or 3,303 individuals.

Maricel Casiño-Rivera, city information officer, posted on CDO Infonet page on a social networking site warning residents to avoid floodwaters as leptospirosis may infect them.

She said the city health office is giving out doses of doxycycline at the evacuation centers and advised that residents may also check out the nearest health center in their areas once the following symptoms are observed: high fever, headache, chills, muscle aches, vomiting, jaundice (yellow skin and eyes), red eyes, abdominal pain, diarrhea and rash.

Increased income

The weather may have hampered many people from their usual activities but to Bobong Buta, as ‘trisikad’ drivers call him, he considered the days of incessant rains and the arrival of Agaton as a blessing in disguise.

Bobong, 39, a resident of Villarin Street in Carmen, has four children.

For more than a week of continuous rains, Buta’s daily earnings reached to almost a thousand pesos, as more people take the ‘trisikads.’

“Dili naman gud sila makabaklay bisan duol ra sa dalan kay sige baya ulan. Hayahay na hinuon kaayo mi kay pirme lang dunay pasahero,” Bobong related.

Although he constantly fears and worries, he said the rains bring him more income.

It is his first time to drive a trisikad since he stopped doing labor due to health issues.

In Misamis Oriental, the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (PDRRMC) noted more flooding in Gingoog City. It has prompted the province to activate its second PDRRMC monitoring team there while the other one is holding operations at the provincial capitol office.

A bridge in Barangay Casinglot in the municipality of Tagoloan, Misamis Oriental collapsed on Sunday causing heavy traffic there.

PDRRMC also reported damages on agriculture and properties in the municipalities of Tagoloan, Lugait and Naawan.

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on January 20, 2014.

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