BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN
Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson yesterday raised the alert status of all Local Disaster Risk Reduction Management Operations Centers in Negros Occidental to “red” due to Super Typhoon Karding (Noru).
Flights and sea travel from Bacolod to Manila, and vice versa, were also suspended yesterday because of Karding.
The Provincial Council for Risk Management and Disaster Reduction of Negros Occidental, in its special advisory on tropical cyclones, reported that the province is not directly affected by Super Typhoon Karding, however, classes at all levels in private and public schools in Hinobaan, Sipalay, Cauayan, Candoni, Binalbagan, Isabela, Moises Padilla, EB Magalona and the towns of Kabankalan, Ilog and Himamaylan were for September 26.
Mayor Gina Montilla-Lizares also ordered the suspension of K-12 classes, as well as the alternative learning system, in the city of Sipalay starting today.
Lizares revealed that the city of Sipalay is also experiencing moderate to heavy rains.
Hinobaan Mayor Daph Anthony Reliquias in Executive Order Number 32 today declared the cancellation of classes at Hinobaan, noting that severe weather conditions, heavy rains and high winds prevail in Hinobaan.
Flash floods reportedly hit low-lying areas of Caliling and Inayawan barangays in Cauayan, which were blamed on incessant rains from the southwest monsoon.
Additionally, EB Magalona has suspended work in government offices until further notice.
The Philippine Air Lines also canceled four flights – PR 2135/ PR 2136/ PR 2137/ PR 2138 – Manila-Bacolod-Manila, on September 25. At the same time, the Cebu Pacific Manila-Bacolod flight (5J-477) was also temporarily suspended yesterday.
In his published travel advisory, Commander Joe Luviz Mercurio of the Coast Guard Station of North Negros Occidental said that all vessel voyages en route to Batangas and Manila via BREDCO Port in Bacolod City have been suspended. starting September 25.
On the other hand, the Regional Council for Risk Management and Disaster Reduction 6 has raised its alert status to Red, due to Super Typhoon Karding and the Southwest Monsoon which is affecting the Western Visayas, including including Western Negros.
The Negros Occidental Provincial Risk Management and Disaster Reduction Council issued a special tropical cyclone advisory urging Negrenses to be vigilant for rain showers and isolated thunderstorms.
The PDRRMC has also advised various councils within the DRRMO to enhance their preparedness, for example by taking proactive and precautionary measures in the event of possible flooding, reviewing contingency plans and carrying out preventive or compulsory evacuation, if necessary.
On the other hand, Emergency Operations Center RDRRMC VI also said that Charlie protocol, or the highest Emergency Preparedness and Response (EPR) protocol, has been activated at Negros Occidental, Aklan, Antique, Iloilo and Guimaras, areas classified as high risk/sensitive. landslides and floods, based on data from the Bureau of Mines and Geosciences (MGB) VI.
He also advised the public to stay alert and watch for weather updates, and encouraged preemptive evacuation, as needed, especially in low-lying areas and those at high risk of landslides.*