Classes suspended again today, as LGUs focus on cleanup, rescue

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Wednesday, December 5, 2012


THERE will be no classes in all levels in Cebu City and Cebu Province today, in part because classrooms may be needed as evacuation centers for survivors of typhoon Pablo.

Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia declared the suspension during the second meeting yesterday of the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council at the Capitol.

Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama, who convened the Cebu City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, also suspended today’s classes, until the weather improves.

But work at City Hall will resume today, he said in a press conference at 7 last night.

Work in most offices was suspended early yesterday afternoon, to give employees time to reach home before Pablo’s rains and winds reached their peak.

Pablo was 145 kilometers southwest of Iloilo City at 11 last night. It packed winds of 140 kph near the center and gusts of up to 170 kph. The weather bureau Pagasa expects Pablo to be 355 kms. west of Coron, Palawan tonight and 750 kms. west of Metro Manila tomorrow night.

Southern Cebu, Bohol, Negros Oriental and Siquijor remained under signal number three late last night, while the rest of Cebu remained under signal number two.

Oscar Tabada of Pag-asa’s Mactan Station told Sun.Star Cebu in a phone interview that there was less rainfall than expected.

Still, strong winds yesterday uprooted trees and toppled some electric posts in Cebu City.

City Hall’s disaster management council said a tree collapsed and hit a house in Buena Hills, Sitio San Isidro in Barangay Guadalupe. Another tree was uprooted in the mountain barangay of San Jose. No one was hurt.

A post of the Visayan Electric Co. (Veco) in the mountain barangay of Toong collapsed during the strongest winds. A post owned by the Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. (PLDT) also collapsed at the corner of Osmeña Blvd. and Arlington Pond.

Both utility companies already addressed both situations.

Also yesterday, Mayor Michael Rama ordered some residents living in the coastal areas of Barangays Ermita, Suba and Pasil to evacuate and take shelter in the barangay gym, to protect them against big waves and storm surges.

Several other families in Barangay Sawang Calero were also ordered to evacuate to Sawang Calero Elementary School.

Contractors offered their equipment to the Provincial Government in case there was a need to transport relief goods to the towns and component cities, or to clear debris.

Cebu Provincial Police Office (CPPO) Director Patrocinio Comendador said as of yesterday there were no reported fatalities or severe damage to property.

Provincial Engineer Adolfo Quiroga said the areas that were being monitored for flooding were Pinamungahan, Consolacion and Balamban towns. Other flood-prone areas are Daanbantayan, Bantayan, Medellin, San Francisco and Lapu-Lapu City.

Quiroga said the areas highly prone to landslides were Cebu City, Toledo City, Danao City, Balamban, Tuburan, Asturias and Argao.

Brownouts were reported in the towns of Dalaguete and Boljoon. At least five houses were washed away in Oslob, but overall reports indicated the damage was not as bad as expected.

“To me, this is again a clear manifestation of how the Señor Sto. Niño continues to protect us, through the intercession of Our Lady of Guadalupe and now the kind intercession as well of San Pedro Calungsod,” Governor Garcia said.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on December 05, 2012.

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