Bicol on high alert for flashfloods, landslidesBy Mar S. Arguelles
Inquirer Southern Luzon
LEGAZPI CITY — Bicol disaster authorities here are on high alert for flash floods and landslides as moderate to heavy rains, spawned by the prevailing Tail End of the Cold Front (TECF), have been pelting the region since Thursday, a regional disaster official said.
The different local disaster councils have been advised to be on alert as a cumulative 18 millimeter rainfall brought by the TECF was dumped early Friday morning in Albay and neighboring provinces, said Bernardo Alejandro, Office of Civil Defense (OCD) regional director and Bicol Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (RDRRMC) chairperson.
He said rainfall of this intensity would cause flooding and landslides in low lying villages across Bicol region.
Alejandro said affected were communities near river channels and mountain slopes, specifically those surrounding Mount Mayon in Albay, Mount Bulusan in Sorsogon, low lying towns in Camarines Sur and Camarines Norte and in Catanduanes which are prone to floods and landslides.
Fisherfolks have been advised not to venture fishing due to strong gale force winds brought by the northeast monsoon prevailing in the eastern seaboards of the Camarines provinces, Albay and Sorsogon.
The gale force wind creates 3 to 4 meters high waves that endanger small sea crafts venturing at sea, said Alejandro.
Meanwhile, Albay Governor Joey Salceda on Friday suspended classes in the elementary and secondary levels in the entire province as part of precautionary measures.
He also advised local disaster councils in Albay’s 15 towns and three cities to strictly enforce the “No crossing of rivers and flooded waters” rule in their respective areas.