Transformed into a virtual “water world” by intensive rainfall and high tide, the coastal town of Obando on Wednesday was placed under a state of calamity.
All 11 villages have been submerged to three to six feet of floodwaters aggravated by high tide, Gov. Wilhelmino Sy-Alvarado, chairman of Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council said.
Damages to agriculture, fisheries, infrastructures and properties are now being assessed by the Office of the Mayor in Obando town. It is estimated to reach multi-million pesos, the Obando Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office reported on Wednesday.
Liz Mungcal, PDRRM executive officer said, the capital city of Malolos was also hard hit by the southwest monsoon enhanced by typhoon Maring.
At least 17 villages in this capital city were submerged under to two to four feet of floodwaters since Monday.
Mayor Christian Natividad of Malolos City said that many big subdivisions in the city, particularly in the villages of Sumapang Matanda and Mojon have became virtual “water worlds” as released waters from Ipo and Bustos dams cascaded in these areas and transformed its streets into raging river.
Natividad also said that an 11-month old baby boy, identified as Jian Charles Centeno, a resident of No. 74-B Jacinto street, Barangay Canalate, Malolos City, was found dead while floating inside their flooded house.
The mayor said that initial investigation conducted by the Malolos City Police Office disclosed that according to the victim’s parents, Jaime and Carol Centeno—they left the baby boy to the care of his sister Kathrina Centeno (13 years old) when they went out to buy food at the public market.
After an hour, when they returned they saw the lifeless body of the baby boy floating in the flood water inside their house while Kathrina was seen sleeping.
In Meycauayan City, a 53-year-old man also died of drowning.
Police identified the victim as Lodigario Parado, married, scavenger, native of Leyte and a resident of Kanluran, Barangay Caingin, Meycauayan City, Bulacan.
The PDRRMO also reported that 29 villages in four municipalities of Marilao, Calumpit, Pulilan and Bocaue were submerged under two to four feet of floodwaters.
The Governor said they are closely monitoring the release of waters from the three big dams, Angat, Bustos and Ipo, as well as the water elevation at the Candaba swamp and the Pampanga river.
He said that as of 4 p.m. Tuesday, Bustos Dam has released 500 cubic per second of water.
He said both Bustos and Ipo dams has been discharging since Sunday, aggravating the floods spawned by the southwest monsoons.
He said that disaster control officials are now keeping a tight watch on the coastal towns of Hagonoy and Calumpit, the perennial catch basins of back floods coming from Pampanga, Nueva Ecija and parts of Bulacan.
The release of waters from Bustos and Ipo dams and high tide are also expected to worsen the flooding in the said coastal towns.
“We have already dispatched rescue teams to these flood- stricken areas to ensure the safety of the people living in these coastal municipalities,” Alvarado said.
The governor added that residents living along the so called geo-hazards area or those living along the river banks have already been evacuated.
He said the government will relocate those residents into government housing units in Pandi within the end of this month and by September.
The PDRRMO said that some 876 families or 3,583 persons from 37 heavily flooded villages in 10 towns and three cities of Bulacan have been evacuated to 40 evacuation centers in different parts of the province.
As of 6 a.m. Wednesday, the water level at Ipo dam was 100.11 meters (spilling level: 101 meters) while the water level at Bustos rubber dam was 17.53 meters (spilling level: 17.70 meters).
The water elevation at Angat dam was 196.36, still way below its spilling level of 210 meters. PNA