CEBU City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO) head Ramil Ayuman said they met with Budlaan barangay officials to discuss measures that would regulate activities in the two falls located in the barangay to avoid the same recent incident in Tinubdan falls in Catmon, Cebu, from happening.
He said they started a trail mapping of the falls in Cebu City early this year and on Wednesday, Sept. 29, 2021, they were able to meet with the Budlaan barangay officials as he said the longest of the more than 20 waterfalls in Cebu City, the Tinisig-Uwang Falls, which is about 40 meters in height, is located in Budlaan.
Another waterfall, the Kabang Falls, is also located in Budlaan, Cebu City.
He said they are scheduled to have a follow-up meeting on Monday, Oct. 4, to finalize a resolution that would regulate the entry of locals and tourists in the falls.
“We’re starting with Budlaan but we will also do it in other barangays where waterfalls are located,” he said.
“The incident in Tinubdan was really unexpected and tragic,” he added.
Three died, including a seven-year-old girl, when a group of tourists was swept by an unexpected gush of water in Tinubdan falls on Sept. 28.
Ayuman said aside from a resolution, the barangay will also come up with a barangay ordinance as agreed upon by the CDRRMO and the barangay.
Part of this ordinance, he said, will be the imposition of fees that will be used for the caretakers and maintenance.
He, however, said there are some issues surrounding it as the areas near Kabang and Tinisig-Uwang Falls are owned by eight different lot owners.
“The lot owners might ask for their share. We are targeting the last week of October when we can put up the trail markings. And if a tourist gets lost, there’s a QR code on the map that would direct him to the contact numbers of our office,” Ayuman said.
He said once an ordinance will be implemented, he hopes that someone can guard the entrance of these areas and guide the tourists especially in off-limit areas.
He said each barangay in Cebu City has 10 barangay-based responders and tour guides in Cebu Province.
He said the Department of Tourism also has an ongoing seminar in barangays Budlaan, Malubog and Sirao, among other mountain barangays.
He also emphasized that falls are not really meant for picnic activities and there should be a limit on the number of hours spent in these areas. Drinking of alcoholic beverages is also discouraged while in there. (WBS)