By Mar S. Arguelles
Inquirer Southern Luzon
First Posted 22:21:00 06/07/2010
LEGAZPI CITY, Philippines—The Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) on Monday identified some 49 towns in the Bicol Region as landslide-prone areas and warned residents in these areas to prepare and evacuate to safer ground when heavy rains and typhoons threaten.
This as the state weather bureau said that the development of a series of low pressure areas over the past days, which generated the southwesterly winds, has signaled the onset of the rainy season on the first week of June.
Reynaldo Juan, MGB-Bicol regional director, reiterated his warning to residents on the dangers posed to their lives and properties once floods and landslide hit these places.
Juan said places at high risk to landslide are eight towns and a city in Albay, eight towns in Camarines Norte, 12 in Camarines Sur, eight in Catanduanes, five in Masbate and seven in Sorsogon.
Juan said the residents of the following municipalities should be prepared and evacuate to safer grounds when continuous rain in their localities occurs: Bacacay, Libon, Malilipot, Malinao, Manito, Rapu-Rapu, Sto. Domingo, Tiwi and Ligao in Albay; Basud, Capalonga, Labo, Mercedes, Paracale, San Lorenzo Ruiz, San Vicente, and Sta. Elena in Camarines Norte;
Buhi, Caramoan, Garchitorena, Goa, Lagonoy, Libmanan, Lupi, Pasacao, Presentacion, Sagnay, Sipocot and Tinambac in Camarines Sur; Bagamanoc, Baras, Bato, Caramoran, Gigmoto, Pandan, Panganiban, and San Andres in Catanduanes; Aroroy, Baleno, Mandaon, Milagros, and Mobo in Masbate; and Bulan, Irosin, Juban, Magallanes, Matnog, Sta. Magdalena and Sorsogon City in Sorsogon.
He clarified, however, that residents of other municipalities not named are encouraged to observe the necessary precaution and preparation to evacuate to safer grounds when their area show signs of an impending landslide or has a history of landslide.
The Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) said that as of 2 a.m. Monday, a low pressure area was spotted at 760 kilometers northeast of Basco, Batanes.
Eastern sections of Northern and Central Luzon experienced mostly cloudy skies with scattered rainshowers and thunderstorms while the rest of the country had partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated rainshowers or thunderstorms, mostly in the afternoon or evening.
The series of low pressure systems, also known as heat lows, in the southern part of mainland Asia that linked with the low pressure area near Northern Luzon has generated and sustained the southwesterly winds in the country which brought rains for several days especially in the western section of the country, said the Pagasa.
It added the onset of the wet season in areas under the type 1 climate covers the western parts of Luzon and Visayas.
The rainy season which is associated with the southwest monsoon is expected to last until the end of September. However, monsoon breaks or periods of no rain for a few weeks are expected during the season, clarified Pagasa in its bulletin issued Monday.
With the increasing probability of the occurrence of La Niña beginning on the third quarter of this year that can result to above normal rainfall, residents in low-lying areas and near mountain slopes were advised to take precautionary measures against possible flash floods and landslides during periods of heavy rains.