Davao provinces ready to face Typhoon ‘Pablo’

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 3 Dec) – Local chief executives in the Davao Region said Monday their provinces are ready for the fast approaching Typhoon “Pablo.”

After the Regional Peace and Order Council (RPOC) meeting here this morning Davao Oriental Gov. Corazon Malanyaon hurriedly departed back home upon receiving an advisory that her province has already been placed under storm signal no. 3.

Davao del Norte and Compostela Valley are under signal no. 2 while Davao del Sur, signal no. 1.

Malanyaon said it was still sunny when she left for Davao City at 5:30 a.m. but admitted that weather changes “could go fast.”

She said the disaster risk reduction management council of every municipality and the provincial director of the Philippine National Police were already alerted early this morning, but she has to be present in the province and check with action officers of the councils.

Davao del Norte Gov. Rodolfo del Rosario, the RPOC chair, told reporters that his province, as well as the other provinces, has been prepared for the typhoon.

“We’re waiting for it. We’re ready to face it if it comes at all,” he added.

Del Rosario said the province has allotted 70 percent of its five-percent calamity fund, which was spent for buying equipment for rescue operations, constituents’ capacity building and relief goods that are already in place.

The remaining 30 percent of the fund, he continued, is reserved after the calamity for restoration and recovery of the province, especially in areas that are prone to flooding such as New Corella, Tagum City, Asuncion and Carmen.

The information office of Tagum City sent text advisories at 12 noon Monday that Davao del Norte is within the storm’s path and directed all business establishments and institutions to “roll up their respective tarpaulins and advertising materials in the light of the coming storm.”

Tagum City has heavy equipment such as dump trucks, hydraulic boom truck, loader, and self loading truck, as well as rubber boat and ambulance set for automatic deployment.

Davao del Norte, according to the advisory from the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) issued 11 a.m. Monday, is under storm signal no. 2 with 61 to 100 kph winds expected in 24 hours.

Compostela Valley Gov. Arturo Uy, who also attended the RPOC meeting, said residents in mining areas were advised to evacuate today, while those who are living along the shoreline to evacuate early Tuesday.

Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte said in her press briefing Monday that the preparation of the city’s disaster risk reduction management council is a standard operating procedure as the region is expecting a storm.

Although the city, which started to have rainfall on Monday afternoon, is not in the path of the storm, Duterte said the preparation is still necessary in order to avert grave impacts and to support other provinces that will be affected by Pablo. (Lorie Ann A. Cascaro / MindaNews)