Flooding hurts 50 households in Cebu-A A +A
Sunday, September 9, 2012
CEBU CITY – Two sitios in Barangay Sapangdaku, Cebu City were hit by a flash flood following a heavy downpour on Saturday, in a week marked by rainy afternoons.
Four people spent half an hour trapped inside their home by rising floodwater, while students were compelled to cut a camping activity short.
Sapangdaku village chief Lorna Damalerio said the flash flood affected some 50 families in Sitios Caimitohan Riverside and Mohon, when floodwaters entered their houses.
They were immediately brought to higher ground.
Aside from barangays Guadalupe and Sapangdaku, Alvin Santillana of Cebu City’s Local Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (LDRRMC) said the flash flood on Saturday affected several areas in Barangays Kalunasan and Sambag II.
In an interview, Damalerio said sitios Caimitohan Riverside and Mohon have always been hit by flood whenever there is a heavy rain, as it is located near the Sapangdaku River, but Saturday’s impact was more pronounced.
“Karon pa gyud ni nga na-grabehan kay nangaanod man gyud ang mga appliances ug mga baboy nila (It was the worst yet, and some people’s appliances and hogs were carried away),” she said.
Damalerio said no houses were damaged, except for one that sits near the river. She said the Bureau of the Fire Protection (BFP) had to tear down part of the house to rescue the four people who were trapped inside.
The four people, Damalerio said, could not get out of the house because of the surge of floodwater.
Aside from the families affected, Damalerio said some 50 students from Sapangdaku Elementary School were also evacuated on Saturday.
Damalerio said the students were camping inside the school when floodwater rushed in. Their camp, which was supposed to end Sunday yet, was cut short.
Damalerio blamed the flash flood on the ongoing construction of a P12-million bridge in the area, which is 30 to 40 meters long and six meters wide.
The bridge is a project of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) and is supposed to connect barangays Sapangdaku and Guadalupe. The said bridge will replace the already dilapidated bridge in the area.
Damalerio said the project has caused the water from the river to overflow.
The village chief questioned the delay in the completion of the project. She said the project started last February and was supposed to be finished last July yet.
Upon the instructions of Mayor Michael Rama, LDRRMC’s Santillana said they will ask the contractor of the project, Dakay Construction and Development Corporation, to fast track the construction of the bridge.
Damalerio said, though, that Dakay suggested to close the old bridge so they can finish the project immediately, but the residents opposed to it.
The weather bureau has warned of moderate to heavy rains over the western portions of Luzon and Visayas, which may cause floods and landslides, within July to September. It said that tropical cyclones over Northern Luzon were expected during these months to enhance the southwest monsoon.
It also said the rains associated with the southwest monsoon would “gradually recede” during the second half of September.
In a separate interview on Saturday, Santillana again asked those who are living near rivers to relocate themselves to a much safer area so as not to endanger their lives.
“Although the rain has stopped and the floodwaters have subsided, it’s not a guarantee nga di sila mabahaan balik diha that we’re safe from floods),” he said.
When the water subsided on Saturday, the affected families went back to their respective homes.
Sun.Star Cebu tried to interview the site engineer but he refused to issue statements or give his name.
Several culverts were piled up under the bridge but these clogged up and the water rose by as much as 10 feet, entering houses in Sitio Mohon, Barangay Sapangdaku.
The rising water trapped an 88-year-old healer, her husband, and two of her patients past 12 p.m.
The emergency rescue team of Barangay Basak-Pardo helped pull them out by cutting a hole into their roof.
Pacing Navarro, 88, recalled she was treating her two patients at the second floor when the water rapidly rose in a span of five minutes.
Her husband Moricio, 62, tried to get them out, to no avail. The water was already in their waist and they could be washed by the current.
“Tunga sa oras mi didto na-trap. Abi nako mamatay nami (We were trapped for half an hour. I thought we would die),” Pacing said.
During their rescue, Pacing was brought to the health center in Barangay Guadalupe after she passed out.
“Pagsuway ni pero gitabangan gyud mi niya (This is a trial but she has helped us),” Pacing added, referring to the Blessed Virgin Mary, on whom she relies for her healing work.
Meanwhile, her neighbor Wilson Reandon, 30, was watching television with his family when the water rapidly increased.
“Dugay na ko nagpuyo diri, bisan ug kusog ang uwan, dili ni molapaw ug ing-ani kataas (I have lived here for a long time, and I can’t remember a time when the water level rose so fast),” he said.
Sari-sari store owner Lenet Adolfo, 40, showed Sun.Star Cebu her damaged supplies and goods because of the flood. She said the bridge expansion was supposed to have been finished last July 5, 2012. It was started on February 6, 2012 with the cost P12.98 million.
“Tungod ana kay dako kay ko ug lugi (This has formed me to get deeper in debt),” Adolfo added.
Workers of Dakay Construction and Development Corp. were compelled to destroy the drainpipes with the use of a backhoe.
Guadalupe Barangay Councilor Roberto Camu told Sun.Star Cebu that a two-storey concrete house in Sitio Ma. Theresa Uno was washed away by the flood.
The elderly house owner identified as a certain “Paquera” was able to get out quickly and left unscathed.
In Sitio Sapang Komunidad and Sta. Lucia, the rain-swollen rivers entered 10 houses and damaged the families’ electric appliances. No one was reported injured.
More than ten families had been affected by the flood but won’t need evacuation, Camu said.
“They have started cleaning their houses as of Saturday afternoon,” the barangay councilor added. (Sun.Star Cebu)
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on September 09, 2012.