P419M crops damaged, 1 million evacuated in Central Luzon floods-A A +A
Friday, August 10, 2012
CITY OF SAN FERNANDO — The three days of incessant rains brought about by the southwest monsoon still prevailing over Luzon Thursday has registered a whooping P419,574,374 damages to palay (rice) crops in Central Luzon (CL) with 1,535,751 families in 190 evacuation centers across the region.
The Department of Agriculture (DA), through its Bureau of Agricultural Statistics, in its partial damage report, said 39,925.28 hectares of palay crops have been affected by the flooding. Out of this number, some 29,536.08 are classified as partially damaged while a remaining 10,389.20are classified as “totally damaged.”
Officials said that they expect a rise in the statistics as reports would come this week.
DA regional director Andrew Villacorta said the reports would be validated and would include a master listing of all affected farmers for assistance from the DA and municipal agriculture offices in various towns.
The DA said they are waiting for updated reports from various provinces and towns in CL for consolidation.
300,000 families affected
Meanwhile, the Police Regional Office (PRO3) reported that some 334,375 are now affected by flooding all across the province and cities in the region as of Thursday. This include Bataan (800 families), Bulacan (75,365), Pampanga (254,795), Tarlac (1,009), Zambales (2,233), Angeles City (30), and Olongapo (143).
Seven were reported dead in Pampanga with another two casualties in Bulacan as of the posting of this report. Three people are also reported missing in Bataan.
As of Monday, the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist (OPA) in Pampanga reported that some P19,470,000 worth of rice crops were either damaged or destroyed in Mabalacat, Magalang, Bacolor, City of San Fernando, Lubao, San Luis and Candaba. The OPA estimated the number of affected farmers as of Monday at 1,635.
Damage to high-value crops was also estimated at P7,242,556 in Angeles City, Mabalacat, Magalang, Arayat, Candaba, Minalin, San Luis and San Simon with 175 affected farmers.
Damage to the fisheries sector in the coastal town of Sasmuan was also estimated at P22,500 for tilapia and another P316, 000 on crabs, bangus (milkfish) and shrimps among others, according to the town’s Municipal Agriculture Office. The report said that two aquafarm operators in Barangay San Pedro were affected covering six hectares.
In San Simon town, also in Pampanga, the OPA said 245 hectares of mature palay is now under floodwater. Pampanga also sustained damages in terms of canals and irrigation facilities.
In Sta. Rita town, a spillway creek in Barangay San Matias overflowed and damaged portions of the walls of the Dominican Convent in the said barangay. Farms in Barangays San Matias, Diladila, San Jose and Gasak are currently underwater.
In Guagua town, 31 barangays are still under floodwater including farmlands and vegetable gardens. Fishpens here also overflowed as of Tuesday.
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on August 10, 2012.