THE downpour that fell on Metro Cebu on Wednesday night, Aug. 19, 2020, caused the Butuanon River to overflow, flooding Sitios Sili, Kalubihan and Talong in Barangay Paknaan, Mandaue City.
City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office (CDRRMO) head Felix Suico Jr. said they evacuated affected residents and brought them to the barangay gym.
He said they first moved the children, while their parents stayed behind to salvage their belongings.
The riprap that the City Government installed along the riverbanks did not stop the water from spilling into the streets.
Suico said his team had a challenging time during the evacuation because the water was thigh-high and the current was very strong. He said they had to use heavy equipment and a lifeline rope during the operation.
He said they started the evacuation around 10 p.m. However, they allowed evacuees to return to their homes after midnight when the flood subsided.
The CDRRMO, Suico said, automatically deploys personnel to flood-prone areas like Barangays Paknaan, Tipolo, Looc and Subangdaku and portions of A.S. Fortuna whenever it receives a rainfall advisory.
As heavy rainfall was also expected on Thursday afternoon, Aug. 20, Suico said his team would remain on alert.
Suico said his office not only deals with evacuating people, but it also has to secure vehicles swept away by the flood current.
Suico advised motorists to heed the warnings of CDRRMO personnel when traveling on flooded streets, particularly on A.S. Fortuna.
Meanwhile, Suico said his office has not conducted any contact tracing or disinfection in the past two days.
He said most of their contact tracing are in remote areas or neighborhoods with informal settlers which are dangerous, especially during heavy downpours.
Rain washes out the solution of their disinfectant so pushing through with the activity would have been a waste of disinfectant, he said.
In Cebu City, Wednesday night’s downpour caused a landslide in the mountain barangay of Agsungot.
According to Barangay Captain Pedro Dumaolao, the incident happened past 11 p.m., covering a one-kilometer stretch of road from the boundary with Barangay Binaliw.
No one was reported injured and there were no reports of property damage.
Mayor Edgardo Labella tasked City Councilor Jerry Guardo, chairman of the committee on infrastructure, to look into the situation so Barangay Agsungot, which has been cut off from the rest of the city since then, is passable to road traffic.
Guardo coordinated with the Department of Engineering and Public Works to deploy heavy equipment in the area and clear the road of rocks and soil debris.
As of press time, the road was cleared but Dumaolao still would not allow motorists to pass since the area remained unstable.
Guardo, who brought along a representative from the Mines and Geosciences Bureau 7, said the problem was exacerbated by the earthquake that struck Cebu on Tuesday, Aug. 18, which had loosened the soil.
He agreed with the barangay captain that the road should be closed to traffic until the area was declared safe. He also said the road would have to be widened.
Dumaolao, for his part, said residents of Barangays Lusaran, Cambinocot and Paril who want to go to the city proper and vice versa would have to go to the Transcentral Highway through Barangays Mabini and Guba.
Guardo had also filed a resolution banning the construction of houses along the river that runs through Barangay Bonbon after 19 houses were swept away by the flood on Monday, Aug. 17, which affected 20 families or 76 individuals. (KFD, PAC / JPB)