The Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) has placed a red rainfall alert on Metro Manila and several nearby provinces due to the continuous heavy rains that have been battering the region since Sunday. reports that the rains, which were caused by the southwest monsoon and further amplified by the tropical storm “Maring” (international name Trami), have rendered several parts of Metro Manila flooded, including Malabon, Makati, Manila, Pasay, and Quezon City. Hundreds of Marikina residents have also evacuated to higher ground as the water level of Marikina River reached alarm level 2, or 16 meters above sea level, on the night of August 18.

The provinces of Bataan, Batangas, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna,Nueva Ecija, Pampanga, Quezon, Rizal, Tarlac, and Zambales are likewise set to experience heavy rains and severe flooding.

The rains have caused the weather bureau to recommend the suspension of preschool and elementary level classes in the affected areas. Several schools have also announced the suspension of classes in the high school and college levels.

The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council reports that Maring has already caused six landslides in the provinces of Abra and Bangued, adding that around 2,000 people in the Ilocos and Cordillera regions are also affected by the storm.

PAGASA also says that Luzon’s spell of bad weather, initially expected to last until Wednesday, might last longer as Maring might stay within the country’s area of responsibility for an extended period of time. While its path might make a U-turn, forecaster Glaiza Escullar says that it still would not hit the country’s landmass.

(Photo by Roberto Verzo via Flickr Creative Commons)

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