KORONADAL CITY (MindaNews/03 July)– The Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) in Region 12 has identified at least 340 villages in the region as prone to severe flooding during the rainy season.
Constancio Paye Jr., MGB Region 12 director, said their latest assessment on the region’s flood vulnerability showed that 179 villages in North Cotabato and Cotabato City, 72 in Sultan Kudarat, 69 in South Cotabato and 20 in Sarangani are considered as flood-prone and “inhabitable during flooding.”
He said such assessment was based on the detailed geo-hazard mapping conducted by the agency in the region.
“We already informed the concerned local government units (LGUs) regarding this assessment so they could start drawing already their disaster management plans,” Paye said in a statement.
The official urged the LGUs with identified “no habitation zones” to verify them and subject them to regular monitoring.
In General Santos City, MGB-12 listed barangays Baluan, Baluyan, Bula, Calumpang, Siguel, Lagao and Sinawal as high risk to flooding.
It listed 38 barangays in Cotabato City also as high risk to flooding.
In South Cotabato, the list included 13 barangays in Banga town, 11 in Koronadal City, 11 in Norala, nine in Surallah, seven in Tantangan, three each in Lake Sebu, Tampakan, and Tupi, two in Sto. Niño, and one in T’boli.
In Sarangani, seven villages were considered as flood-prone in Maitum, five in Kiamba, four in Alabel, three in Glan, and one each in Maasim and Malapatan.
The municipality of Pikit is considered the most flood-prone area in North Cotabato with 30 barangays listed as high risk followed by Midsayap and Kabacan with 17 each, Libungan with 14, M’lang with 13, Carmen and Pigcawayan with 11 each, Tulunan with seven, Alamada and Matalam with six each, Aleosan with four, and President Roxas with one.
In Sultan Kudarat, Lambayong town topped the list with 14 barangays, followed by Palimbang with 10, Lebak and Lutayan with nine each, Bagumbayan with eight, Isulan with seven, Senator Ninoy Aquino with six, Esperanza with four, Columbio with three, and Kalamansig with one.
Paye warned the ongoing rainy season might extend until November due to the warm air of southwest monsoon hovering over the country.
He said such weather condition induces cloudy skies that could bring moderate to heavy rains and thunderstorm.
“It may trigger flash floods in the low-lying areas and landslide in hilly to mountainous terrains. Rains that persist for hours could cause floods and landslides,” he noted.
Paye urged residents to monitor flood build-up in flat terrain along or near river banks and landslide build-up in mountainous terrains.
“If danger is imminent, evacuation to a safer ground is recommended for individuals or groups,” Paye said. (Allen V. Estabillo/MindaNews)