Koronadal to install another automated weather station

KORONADAL CITY (MindaNews/13 Sept) – The city government is set to install another automated weather station (AWS) to help properly monitor the weather pattern in identified landslide and flood-prone areas within the city and the neighboring localities.

Augustus Bretaña, city environment and natural resources officer, said Thursday the local government received earlier this week a complete AWS package through a grant facilitated by the League of Cities of the Philippines (LCP).

He said the LCP earlier forged a partnership with Aboitiz Power and Weather Philippines Foundation for a rollout of the AWS packages to help improve the disaster risk reduction systems of city local governments, especially their capacity to address weather-related concerns.

“This is part of the 1,000 AWS systems that are being installed in various parts of the country through this initiative,” Bretaña said in a radio interview.

The city government’s AWS will be the second facility that would be operating within the city.

The provincial government of South Cotabato installed an AWS last month at the provincial capitol compound here through a similar grant initiated by the League of Provinces of the Philippines.

A project briefer cited that the AWS is a “meteorological weather monitoring instrument that has the capacity to capture atmospheric and meteorological data such as rainfall, wind speed and direction, humidity, and temperature.”

It said the instrument, which was based on a technology developed by a company based in Switzerland, mainly senses, measures, and transmits meteorological data of weather conditions.

Analysis using the AWS will be done every hour and will be posted online for easy access, enhancing the local governments’ weather information system.

Bretaña said the AWS package comprises a sensor that is attached to a tripod or pole and a console where all the captured atmospheric and meteorological data are initially processed.

He said all the data gathered by the AWS will be stored in a database and transmitted to an online portal maintained by Weather Philippines Foundation through its technology partner Meteomedia Philippines.

“It will mainly allow us to have a localized weather forecasting that is regularly updated and easily accessible online,” he said.

Bretaña said they are currently evaluating several areas within the city, among them the city hall complex and a portion of Barangay Saravia, as possible location of the AWS.

But he said they are leaning towards installing the AWS in Barangay Saravia due to the area’s vulnerability to landslides and flashfloods.

The village was placed under the state of calamity last week due to the onslaught of floods and landslides that damaged around 60 hectares of farmlands and affected residents of its four residential communities.

“Our main consideration (in selecting the installation site) is the accessibility and security of the AWS,” he said.

Bretaña said they will install the AWS before September 27, which was set by the LCP and its partners as the system’s simultaneous launching nationwide. (Allen V. Estabillo / MindaNews)