Heavy rains halt sea trips, floods city

By: Dolly Yasa

BACOLOD City – Some parts of Bacolod City were flooded over the weekend due to non-stop rains brought about by the enhanced southwest monsoon or “habagat” and Tropical Depression Hanna.

The Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said “Hanna” was last spotted at 1,070 kilometers east of Infanta, Quezon with maximum sustained winds of 55 kilometers per hour (kph) and gusts at 70 kph.

PAGASA reports that the storm is moving north northwest at 15 kph and is not expected to make landfall in the country. However, the weather bureau warned that the storm can still pose a threat as it is also enhancing the southwest monsoon.

Lacson Street, Palanca Drive at Bredco Port, portions of Araneta Street towards Barangay Sum-ag, Pahanocoy, Banago and the city’s Mambulok area were flooded, although it quickly subsided when the rain stopped.

The heavy rains and winds also uprooted trees like the one in Roxas Avenue which was temporarily impassable after a mango tree fell down.

Bacolod City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office (CDRRMO) officer-in-charge Dondon Parandas said they immediately went on alert due to the weather disturbance.

Parandas said the recent clearing operations conducted by the city also helped, although he noted that flooding is still expected to take place in some areas as their small drainages are not meant to handle heavy volumes of rainfall.

The CDRRMO official added that cleaning operations for the city’s rivers and creeks, as well as dredging could further help control the flood.

In response to the city’s heavy rains and the sea mishap that took place in Iloilo Strait, Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) Bacolod Station commander Lieutenant Rockcliff Buling, immediately ordered a halt on all sea trips for all kinds of vessels on Saturday.

Buling said they made the decision to avert more sea mishaps.

All trips resumed Sunday morning after weather conditions improved.