BAYOMBONG, Nueva Vizcaya: The Office of the Civil Defense (OCD) has issued a flood advisory, warning residents along Middle and Upper Cagayan River in Isabela province of flooding and landslides from effects of the northeast monsoon.
The advisory said “flood is threatening” the Isabela towns of Gamu, Ilagan, San Mariano, Tumauini, Delfin Albano, Santo Tomas, Cabagan, Santa Maria and San Pablo along the Middle Cagayan River, which is the Siffu-Mallig and Pinacanauan rivers of Ilagan, Tumauini and San Pablo.
It added that “flooding is also possible” in the towns of San Agustin, Jones, Echague, Alicia, Angadanan, Cauayan, Naguilian, Reina Mercedes, San Mateo, Cabatuan, Aurora and Luna along the Upper Cagayan River or the Ganano and Magat rivers.
In Cagayan province, the Provincial Information Office has also issued a “flood threatening” advisory within the next 12 hours in the low-lying areas of Tuguegarao City and the towns of Enrile, Solana, Iguig, Amulung, Alcala and Baggao.
The advisory said there is a gradual rise of the Lower Main Cagayan River and its tributaries (Pinacanauan, Zinundungan and Chico rivers), warning residents in the low- lying areas to take all necessary measures against “flashfloods and landslides.”
The OCD in Cagayan Valley (Region 2) said at least two roads and 13 bridges in the provinces of Cagayan and Isabela are not passable to vehicles because of the swelling of rivers and flooding.
Dante Balao, OCD Region 2 director and Regional Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council chairman, said a portion of the national road in Barangay Manaring in Ilagan City, Isabela, is also not passable to light vehicles because of flooding.
Motorists were advised to use other roads leading to Lullutan Bridge in Tumauini town.
In Cagayan province, closed bridges are Pinacanauan overflow bridge in Tuguegarao, Cabasan and Tawi overflow bridges in Peñablanca town and Abusag and Bagunot overflow bridges in Baggao town.
In Isabela province, also closed bridges are Alicaocao overflow bridge in Cauayan City, Santa Maria-Cabagan overflow bridge in Santa Maria town, Santo Tomas-Cansan overflow bridge in Santo Tomas, Gucab overflow bridge in Echague town and Pigalo overflow brdige detour in Angadanan town.
The City of Ilagan (Isabela) Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office said the Cabisera 8 and Cabisera 5 overflow bridges and the Bintacan temporary bridge are not passable, as well as the city’s circumferential and access roads.
The OCD said there are 51 stranded passengers of three boats bound for Calayan Island town and Camiguin in Cagayan province.
Philippine Airlines’ Manila-Basco-Manila flights and Cebu Pacific’s Manila-Tuguegarao-Manila flights were canceled.
In Ramon town in Isabela, the Magat dam reservoir water level rose to 188.81 meters or 4.19 meters short of its critical and spilling level as of 3 p.m. on Sunday.
According to the National Irrigation Administration-Magat River Integrated Irrigation System (NIA-MARIIS), the dam’s reservoir inflow is at 855 cubic meters per second and outflow at 262 CMS.
No spillway gate is open.
The large volume of water flowing into the Magat dam reservoir mostly originates from the upstream Magat River and its tributaries in Nueva Vizcaya and from the Ibulao River in Ifugao.
The volume increases during continuous heavy downpour.
Balao said they have alerted not only residents living in low-lying areas but also those in the mountain areas in the region of possible flashfloods and landslides.
Meanwhile, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) in Region 2 said it has available standby funds of more than P5.39 million and a stockpile of 11,902 family food packs readily available for local government units who may be needing assistance.
DSWD officials said there were 13,400 family food packs already prepositioned in different municipalities of the provinces of Cagayan, Isabela, Quirino and Nueva Vizcaya while 264 sacks of National Food Authority rice and 272 assorted canned goods were also prepositioned in Batanes.
LEANDER C. DOMINGO