A spate of torrential rains brought about by the southwest monsoon has caused flashfloods and landslides in many areas of Metro Manila and surrounding provinces.
The Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) had raised the red alert warning over the capital. This is the highest alert warning for rains, issued only for intense to heavy downpour. According to an article by Rappler.com, more than 300 mm of rain has been recorded at the Advanced Science and Technology Institute’s rain gauge from midnight of August 6 to 6:45 AM of August 7. During the tropical storm Ondoy three years ago, the PAGASA Science Garden had measured 341 mm of rain in a span of six hours.
In a report from Interaksyon.com, Jean Navarez of PAGASA said at least 50 percent of Metro Manila is currently flooded. The floods could also worsen as the La Mesa dam, which is Manila’s only water reservoir, has reached capacity level and was forced to release water, prompting the evacuation of nearby communities.
The water level of the Marikina River is also being monitored as its level has risen well above the 17-meter third alarm mark since midnight. According to a report by Rappler.com, the flood level is now “critical” at 20.00 meters, forcing several of the city’s residents to evacuate.
Many areas in Manila, Malabon, Navotas, Valenzuela, Makati, Pasig, and Quezon City were also submerged since Monday night. Several schools and colleges have declared a suspension of classes today due to the floods. Government offices have also suspended their operations, and as of 9:40 AM, Malacañang has announced the suspension of work in private offices in the NCR and the provinces of Zambales, Bataan, Pampanga, Pangasinan, Tarlac, Laguna, Cavite, Rizal, and Bulacan, including work in the call center and business process outsourcing (BPO) sectors.
Social networking sites have proven essential in bringing news to the Filipino citizens. Aside from media channels, also follow these government-operated accounts for updates during calamities:
In the meantime, read these articles to prepare for any sort of disaster—including floods—that may come your way:
(Photo from Typhoon Ondoy by Ada Lajara via Flickr Creative Commons)