TUGUEGARAO CITY – Rescuers preemptively evacuated 388 families in low-lying areas in Isabela and Cagayan on Sunday as intermittent heavy rains caused rivers to swell anew.
“People got phobia and they have been readying themselves early now,” Cagayan Governor Manuel Mamba said in an interview, referring to the situation two weeks ago when Typhoon Ulysses dumped heavy rains, causing widespread flooding in the two provinces.
Mamba said they are closely monitoring the level of water in the Cagayan River. “Towns and cities near Cagayan River are affected but we are ready. We are resilient and learned our lessons,” he added.
Office of the Civil Defense-Cagayan Valley information officer Francis Joseph Reyes said the 388 families or 1,033 people transferred either to evacuation centers or their relatives’ homes as they felt wary over the continuous rains brought by the cold frontal system.
At least 334 families are now temporarily housed at evacuation centers while 54 families are with their relatives or friends, whose houses are located on higher grounds, he added.
Earlier reported flooded were Annafunan East, Centro 1 and Linao East villages in Tuguegarao City and Canan, Namnama and Tandul in Cabatuan, Isabela.
Residents of other low-lying areas in Luna, San Isidro and San Mateo towns in Isabela have also evacuated, retired Brig. Gen. Jimmy Rivera, Isabela disaster risk reduction management officer, said.
Magat Dam water level was at 189.10 meters above sea level at 8 a.m. on Sunday with 1,002 cubic meters per second (cms) inflow and 661 cms outflow. Two of its gates were opened at three meters each, a report of the National Irrigation Administration-Magat River Integrated Irrigation System said. (PNA)