MALACAÑANG yesterday ordered the activation of the Disaster Response Task Force due to continuous rains caused by enhanced southwest monsoon.
Office of the Special Assistant head Secretary Christopher “Bong” Go said the Armed Forces of the Philippines has been ordered to activate the task force and get regular updates on flooded areas from the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority and the status of the Marikina River.
Marikina City Mayor Marcelino Teodoro said that they have raised Alert Level 3 at the Marikina River.
He said that as of 3 p.m., water level at the Marikina River was 17.5 meters.
The local government later ordered all pre-assigned evacuation centers opened.
Teodoro said the river’s water level may continue to rise as they expect water from upstream rivers to flow down to the city’s main tributary.
The mayor said residents in Barangays Nangka and Tumana have started evacuating.
Earlier, the La Mesa Dam management raised the red alert for the dam.
La Mesa plant manager Teddy Angeles said water elevation at the dam as of noon had reached 79.62 meters, just 53 centimeters below the overflow level.
Angeles said they have recommended the evacuation of residents in areas that will be affected by the La Mesa Dam’s overflow.
Communities along the Tullahan River in Quezon City and the Camanava area have been alerted against possible flooding.
Quezon City Mayor Herbert Bautista had said that some residents along the Tullahan River were evacuated on Friday night.
Truckloads of trash
The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) has collected 20 truckloads of silt and garbage from the drainage system along Taft Avenue in Manila during a de-clogging operation.
Since Tuesday, monsoon rains brought about gutter-deep flood along Taft Avenue, inconveniencing pedestrians, prompting the Flood Control and Sewerage Management Office (FCSMO) of the agency to conduct de-clogging operations from Padre Faura to P. Ocampo.
“Our FCSMO personnel noticed that the flood has not receded even after the rain has stopped,” MMDA Officer-in-Charge Emerson Carlos said. “It was later found out that the cause was dumping in the drainages of cement residue from the concrete mixers used for the ongoing construction of a residential building.”
According to Baltazar Melgar, head of the FCSMO, the contractor of the building is San Jose Builders. “We tried to talk to them through any of their representatives to castigate them for the effects of their actions, but they refused.”
The MMDA-FCSMO devoted 200 personnel to the de-clogging operations, which used three backhoe, two vacuum trucks, sewer jet, and manual scrapers.
Flights were diverted yesterday due to bad weather in Manila since 3:00 in the afternoon.
Flights diverted to Clark International Airport in Pampanga were Cebu Pacific flight 5J 111 Hongkong-Mnl; All Nippon Airlines flight NH 869 Haneda-Mnl; flights 5J 960 Davao-Mnl and 5J 618 Tagbilaran-Mnl and QR 932 from Doha Qatar to Manila.
As of press time, five flights were diverted and most of the incoming flights to Manila coming from various points of origin were delayed due to continues heavy rains.
Meanwhile cancelled domestic flights were 5J 704 Tuguegarao-Mnl and 5J 703 Mnl-Dipolog.
NAIA general manager Ed Monreal said that the cancellation was basically to protect the passengers.