Heavy rains flood Malabon areasBy Kristine Felisse Mangunay
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines–Heavy rains since Sunday night flooded areas in Malabon City, prompting schools to suspend classes and the city government to order an evacuation of residents.
Bong Padua, chief public information officer, told the INQUIRER that 19 families living on the riverbanks in Barangay (village) Tinajeros had to be relocated to the barangay hall for their own safety.
According to Padua, floods in the area reached “chest-deep” after water gushed through damaged parts of a dike near the Tullahan River early Monday morning.
The dike serves as a catch basin for water coming from Quezon City, Valenzuela and Bulacan province, among others.
Parts of it were destroyed by the heavy rains overnight and the high tide, Padua said.
In Barangay Potrero, eight families had to be relocated to Malabon Elementary School after floodwaters reached from 14 to as high as 30 inches.
Padua said the evacuees were expected to stay the night in the centers until water levels went down, hopefully within the day.
The City Social Welfare Development Office would shoulder the evacuees’ food, he said.
As of 7:45 a.m., floodwaters on F. Nicolas and C. Santos streets in Niugan village reached up to a foot deep. In several areas in the villages of Catmon and Longos, water levels reached 12 to 28 inches deep.
In front of the Rufina Patis factory on C. Arellano St. for example, the INQUIRER saw that several motorcycle riders had to wait on the sidewalk for the floodwaters to go down.
A rider, who identified himself as “Andy,” said he did not want to risk damaging his vehicle by running it through floodwaters that high.
Although the street was accessible by 11 a.m. to bigger vehicles buses and cars, the floodwaters still caused heavy traffic in the area.
The INQUIRER also spotted a roving 6-by-6 truck, which had a sign that read “Libreng Sakay” and NPD (Northern Police District) but as of 11 a.m., the truck was empty.
Padua said the trucks were filled with stranded commuters at around 7 a.m.
In several areas in the villages of Tanong, Santulan, Baritan and Concepcion, water levels ranged from 8 to 30 inches, according to a report by the City Disaster Risk Reduction Office submitted to Acting Mayor Antolin Oreta III.
Meanwhile, to prevent anymore water from the dike from spilling over into the residential areas, members of the City Engineering Office have been deployed to temporarily “sandbag” the structure’s destroyed parts.
Classes were also suspended for the whole day in 42 private elementary schools, 28 public elementary schools and nine public high schools in the city, according to Padua.
The City of Malabon University in Barangay Longos and the City of Malabon Polytechnic Institute in Concepcion village also announced a suspension of classes for the entire day.