HERMOSA, Bataan: Three barangay (villages) here on Sunday were submerged in flood waters up to five feet deep because of heavy rains brought by the southwest monsoon or habagat and aggravated by Typhoon Gorio.
Barangay Almacen is under five-foot deep waters while Barangay Daungan and Barangay Pulo are under two-foot deep flood waters.
Fishing boats were the only means of transportation in Almacen and Daungan. Passengers were charged P20 each one-way.
Almacen Barangay Chairman Emeterio Villapaña said the floodwaters started to rise at 9 p.m. on Saturday because of heavy rains caused by habagat and continued to rise Sunday because of high tide.
Villapaña said affected were 1,000 families who, as in past floods, chose not to evacuate but remain in their houses or stay with their neighbors.
“They did not want to evacuate because they said they will not be able to work. They also need food and medicines,” Villapaña explained.
When asked what he thought was the cause of yearly flooding in his village, the village chief said, “Maybe because there are no more trees in the mountains to stop the flow or rush of water to the lowlands when heavy rains or storms visit the area.”
Susan Cruz, 53, said they have been experiencing flooding in Almacen from the time she was a child.
She added that complaints that some fishponds hamper the flow of water in the wide Almacen River is not really the problem but it is the regular floods that have come every year for almost 50 years.
“The only solution is to help people, to take care of their safety when the rains come. We are used to it already. There is nothing we can do. The river was already dredged but it still there is flooding when there are heavy rains,” Cruz said.
ERNIE B. ESCONDE