2 kids drown as heavy rains trigger floods, swell rivers in Central and Northern Luzon
DAGUPAN CITY, Pangasinan, Philippines — Two children drowned in the swollen Agno River in Aguilar town, Pangasinan province, on Tuesday as Typhoons Fabian (international name: In-fa) and Cempaka enhanced the habagat (southwest monsoon), dumping heavy rains in several provinces in Central and north Luzon.
Police identified the victims as Ruby Riparip, 8, and her brother, Randy, 7, residents of Barangay San Jose in Aguilar. They were reportedly invited by their friends to swim in the river but were swept away by the strong current around 2 p.m., investigators said.
A rescue team sent to the area had yet to recover the children’s bodies as of Wednesday afternoon.
In Zambales province, at least 11 families were evacuated to higher grounds as heavy rainfall triggered landslides and floods in Castillejos town. They were taken to the municipal evacuation site in Balaybay Resettlement.
A temporary bypass bridge at Barangay San Pablo, also in Castillejos, was damaged by strong river current.
In Olongapo City, incessant rains triggered a landslide at a residential area in Barangay Kalaklan, forcing the evacuation of four families, said Mayor Rolen Paulino Jr.
The level of the river traversing the villages of Mabayuan and Kalaklan in the city was also nearing the critical mark as of 7 a.m. on Wednesday.
Data from the city’s local disaster risk reduction and management office showed that water beneath Mabayuan Bridge was at 1.59 meters. The elevation was already at a warning level (1.5-2.4 m) and less than a meter from the critical mark of 2.5 m.
In Bataan province, work at the Freeport Area of Bataan and in government offices was suspended due to widespread flooding.
Some rivers, particularly at Barangay Magsaysay in Dinalupihan town, had overflowed due to the heavy downpour.
A portion of the Roman Highway province’s capital city of Balanga and low-lying villages in adjacent Orion and Abucay towns were flooded.
In Pampanga province, high tide and monsoon rains caused floodwaters to rise up to 0.6 m in 12 barangays in the coastal town of Masantol.
Water levels in sections of Pampanga River in Candaba, Mexico and Apalit towns were near spilling level on Wednesday, the provincial disaster risk reduction and management office said.
In Ilocos Norte province, at least 25 COVID-19 patients at a makeshift hospital in Batac City had to be relocated due to continuous rain.
—REPORTS FROM YOLANDA SOTELO, JOANNA ROSE AGLIBOT, GREG REFRACCION, TONETTE OREJAS AND JOHN MICHAEL MUGAS
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