Drainage system of mining firm overflows, causes flood in Surigao del Sur

A view of an open-pit mining site in Carrascal, Surigao del Sur taken on Saturday (October 28, 2017). MindaNews file photo by H. MARCOS C. MORDENO

SURIGAO CITY (MindaNews / 07 December) – The drainage system of the settling pond of a large-scale mining company operating in Carrascal town in Surigao del Sur overflowed causing flooding and massive siltation along the highway.

Charlo Basadre, resident mine manager of CTP Construction and Mining Corporation told MindaNews the flooding occurred over the weekend.

In a text message on Monday, Basadre said their drainage system overflowed due to heavy rains and flooded the highway where the drainage canals could not contain the water runoffs.

But he said they immediately worked on the drainage systems in their area and in the highway.

The firm has been extracting nickel, cobalt and chromite ores, among other mineral ores within a 3,564-hectare mining zone and shipping them abroad.

The Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) has required mining firms to build settling ponds to prevent massive siltation.

MGB-Caraga regional director Larry Heradez said in a text message Monday that they dispatched a team to the area on the same day to investigate.

“While we are waiting for the validation report from MGB we are doing drainage improvement. Restore the normal course of the drainage,” Basadre said.

He denied claims that their settling pond got busted. He said the drainage system simply overflowed.

A passerby who requested anonymity said it was scary navigating along the portion of the highway that was flooded by murky waters coming from the mountain.

But he said the road remained passable. (Roel N. Catoto/MindaNews)