Koronadal on lookout for heavy floods

KORONADAL CITY (MindaNews / 16 Nov) – The city government is closely monitoring various low-lying areas situated near critical rivers for the possible occurrence of flooding and landslides due to the sporadic heavy rains in the area.

Cyrus Urbano, head of the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office, said on Tuesday they have raised the alert for residents in at least six barangays that are considered highly prone to floods and landslides due to “unpredictable” weather.

These are Barangays Saravia, Assumption, Carpenter Hill, Topland, San Isidro, and Zone III-Poblacion.

On Monday afternoon, he said they recorded flooding in portions of the General Santos Drive or the national highway here following heavy rains.

Two houses in Sitio New Leyte in Barangay Topland were washed away by floodwaters that swelled from a river in the area past 3 p.m, he said.

Urbano said no one was reported hurt in the incident, which also submerged nearby farms as reported by barangay officials.

“We’re currently conducting follow-up assessment in the affected areas and working on the necessary interventions,” he said in a radio interview.

He said the City Social Welfare and Development Office released initial food and non-food relief items to the affected families.

The official said among those being monitored by their team and other responders are areas traversed by the critical Blok Creek that includes part of the city’s downtown area.

The creek already swelled several times this past year and inundated the city’s roundball or rotunda area as well as portions of the main public market.

Urbano said they monitored some portions of the city that experienced flooding these past days after several hours of heavy rains.

“The floodwaters swelled from our drainage canals because of the heavy rainfall volume,” he said.

He advised residents situated in the identified flood and landslide-prone areas to always be alert and preemptively evacuate if the situation requires.

Those situated in low-lying areas and near riverbanks that experience perennial flooding should consider relocating to safer areas as a long-term solution, Urbano advised.

“Our weather pattern has become unpredictable due to climate change, and some of our river systems can no longer withstand heavy rainfall, resulting in flooding,” he said. (MindaNews)