Cagayan Valley braces for tropical storm ‘Jolina’

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BAYOMBONG, Nueva Vizcaya: Governor Faustino Dy 3rd has ordered the suspension of classes in three provinces in the Cagayan Valley region (Region 2) due to tropical storm “Jolina” (international name: Pakhar).

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Signal No. 2 is up in Isabela, Quirino and Nueva Vizcaya while Cagayan province and the Babuyan Group of Islands is under Signal No. 1, according to the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) said.

Dy said he has alerted the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (PDRRMC) and that sailing and liquor bans were in effect as precautionary measures.

Nueva Vizcaya province and Santiago City have also suspended classes in all levels while the provinces of Cagayan and Quirino have suspended classes up to Senior High School in both public and private schools.

In Cagayan, the provincial government also suspended classes up to senior high school in both private and public schools, alerting the PDRRMC, Quick Response Team and Cagayan Task Force.

Meanwhile, Pagasa is conducting a flood warning operation in Magat River Basin.

Engineer Roy Badilla, officer-in-charge of the Hydro-Meteorology Division of Pagasa, said the large amount of rainfall expected within the next 24 hours has prompted the state weather bureau to issue a flood warning in areas surrounding the Magat River Basin.

Citing the National Irrigation Administration-Magat Rivet Integrated Irrigation System (NIA-MARIIS) in Cauayan City, Isabela, Badilla said the Magat Dam level may climb to its critical and spilling levels.

MARIIS Department Manager Wilfredo Gloria said that as of 11 a.m., the Magat Reservoir Elevation has risen to 188.23 meters, which is just 4.77 meters below the spilling level of 193 meters.

Gloria said that with the present reservoir inflow of 517 cubic meters per second (CMS) and an outflow of 321 CMS, no gates have been opened but warned that the water could climb to its critical and spilling level if the downpour from the tropical storm continued.

The Office of the Civil Defense (OCD) warned Cagayan Valley residents of severe flooding in the low-lying areas in Isabela and Cagayan provinces.

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