• Towns prepare for monsoon rains

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    LEGAZPI CITY: The Office of Civil Defense (OCD) in Bicol has prohibited small boats from sailing after a gale warning was raised by the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa).

    Bernardo Rafaelito “Raffy” Alejandro, OCD director and chairman of the Regional Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council told The Manila Times that small boat operators and fishermen in the provinces of Camarines Sur, Camarines Norte, Albay and Catanduanes were prohibited to sail as part of precautionary measures.

    Anyone caught violating the advisory, according to the PDRRMC chairman, will be dealt with accordingly.

    Alejandro said that his office is closely monitoring Typhoon Falcon as it has maintained its strength as it continues moving in a west-northwest direction.

    Though Typhoon Falcon will not pass through in Bicol, Pagasa officials warned of heavy downpour.

    Falcon with maximum sustained winds of 130 kph near the center and gustiness of up to 160 kph moving West Northwest at 20 kph is expected to leave the country on Friday.

    The Cavite Provincial Disaster Risk and Reduction Management Office has announced that parts of province will be affected by thunderstorms, heavy rains strong winds and possible flashfloods.

    Cavite Governor Jonvic Remulla announced on Wednesday that classes in levels both for private and public schools are suspended on Thursday as low lying areas like Noveleta, Kawit, Rosario, Imus City and some parts in Bacoor are flooded due to overflowing of rivers.

    In Bataan, the mayors of the towns of Dinalupihan, Samal, Abucay, Pilar, Limay, Mariveles and Morong and Balanga City announced that classes in all levels in both private and public schools were also suspended.

    Dinalupihan Mayor Gila Garcia said several flood-control projects have been implemented in the town including the construction of new tributaries from barangay Sta. Isabel to barangays Daan-Bago and Layac.

    In 2014, they undertook their five priority flood control projects, including the construction and repair of the dike in Pagalanggang and in Pita as well as rehabilitation of the Maguindong dam in Luakan.

    The Pagasa also announced on Wednesday that the La Mesa Dam in Novaliches, Quezon City has been placed on “red alert” status due to heavy rains experienced for the past few days.

    In a radio interview, Pagasa Hydrologist Richard Orendain said the agency is monitoring the dam and noted that the water level has reached 79.59 meters, slowly nearing the 80.15-meter spilling level.

    Residents in low-lying areas along the path of the Tullahan River, which emanates from the La Mesa Dam, are advised to take the necessary precaution.

    Tullahan River traverses several barangays in Novaliches, Quezon City and Caloocan, Valenzuela City and Malabon City before emptying into the Manila Bay.

    Meanwhile, the victims of Tropical Storm Egay in La Union province would be receiving cash assistance from government agencies.

    Interior Sec. Mar Roxas offered the rehabilitation of damaged infrastructures while Social Welfare Sec. Dinky Soliman and Valenzuela City Cong. Sherwin Gatchalian distributed cash assistance.

    La Union has been declared under a state of calamity due to the destruction brought by storm Egay where more than 14,000 residents were affected.

    WITH WILLIAM JUN GARCIA, ERNIE ESCONDE, ROGELIO LIMPIN AND PNA

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