'Gener' floods streets in Metro Manila-A A +A
Wednesday, August 1, 2012
HEAVY downpour brought by Typhoon "Gener" (international name: Saola) on Wednesday submerged some areas in Metro Manila in knee-deep floods, including Roxas Boulevard, rendering some roads impassable to light vehicles.
The flood crept from Manila Bay and spread through the northbound and southbound roads of Quirino Avenue up to Kalaw street as early as 6:30 a.m.
The giant waves from the bay also washed tons of garbage and debris over the service road on Roxas Boulevard.
The water surge also prompted the United States embassy to temporarily close operations.
In its Twitter account, the US embassy said the consular section will reschedule missed visa interviews.
Flood-prone Palanca Street in Quiapo also went under water. Due to the widespread flooding, motorists were advised to take alternate routes.
While the floods would momentarily subside, they would again rise up because of the clogged drainage system in the city.
Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim ordered the suspension of afternoon classes in high school in the wake of heavy rains and floods brought by Gener. Elementary and kinder classes were earlier suspended.
As of 4 p.m. Wednesday, Gener was 380 kilometers north northeast of Batanes. It carries maximum winds of 130 kilometer per hour (kph) and gustiness of up to 160 kph.
Gener moves north northwest at 15 kph, according to the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa).
Areas under storm signal number 2 are Batanes, Calayan and Babuyan group of islands, while rest of Cagayan and Apayao remain under signal number 1.
Winds of 61 to 100 kph are expected in areas under signal number 2 in at least 24 hours, while those under signal number 1 will expect winds of 30 to 60 kph.
In September last year, Typhoon Pedring plunged the five-star Hotel Sofitel, sitting on reclaimed land, in waist-deep waters from the bay, forcing the hotel staff to relocate their guests to other hotels.
The typhoon also battered the decades-old 730-meter seawall along Roxas Boulevard.
Following the onslaught of Pedring, the Manila City Government ordered the relocation of some 20,000 informal settlers living along the shoreline of Manila Bay and city's various waterways and canals, and for the city engineering office to repair the seawall and other infrastructure wrecked by the super-typhoon.
Navotas City, meanwhile, has been placed under a state of calamity due to floods caused by hours of heavy rains, as hundreds fled their homes and sought shelter in evacuation centers.
Classes were suspended on Wednesday from pre-school to high school in Metro Manila and nearby provinces due to the floods.
Heavy rains brought by Gener have inundated the cities of Manila, Pasay, Mandaluyong, San Juan, Marikina and Quezon.
Aside from the National Capital Region (NCR), classes were also suspended in the provinces of Bulacan, Cavite, Pampanga, Rizal, La Union and Zambales.
According to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, 12 were confirmed death and two others were missing while Gener continues to move out of the country's waters.
The NDRRMC said Gener affected 63,670 families or 303,941 people in 413 barangays (villages) in 75 municipalities and 18 cities in 25 provinces of Ilocos Region, Cagayan Valley, Central Luzon, Calabarzon, Mimaropa, Western Visayas, Central Visayas, Northern Mindanao, Soccsksargen, Cordillera Administrative Region, and NCR.
Of these, 31,135 families or 154,211 people are being assisted inside and outside evacuation centers.
At least 1,000 houses were damaged, while 658 were destroyed. Some roads and bridges in Cagayan, Ilocos Sur, Pampanga, Isabela, Aklan, Camiguin, Benguet, Mountain Province, Apayao, Ifugao and parts of NCR, including Malabon and Valenzuela cities, were closed to traffic as of Tuesday due to floods. (JCV/Sunnex)