Karl Michael Marasigan, chief of the Quezon City Disaster Risk Reduction Management office, has primed the city’s various response units and staff for quick deployment in cases of emergency this rainy season, activating a constant “yellow” or standby alert after the state weather bureau, PAGASA, declared the start of the rainy season last May 30.
According to Marasigan, rescue boats have been pre-positioned in several flood-prone areas in case residents need to be evacuated due to flooding.
The QC DRRMO convened an emergency meeting of its technical working group to assess the city government’s state of preparedness due to the episodes of heavy downpour that occur nearly each day.
Daisy Ortega, senior weather specialist of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration, who attended the meeting, said weathermen expect six to nine tropical cyclones over the next three to four months, reiterating that, although this is just a forecast and might change over time, the probability of the occurrence of these tropical cyclones is still high.
Representatives of the technical working group’s component agencies presented their respective plans to deal with instances of floods, disease outbreaks, and heavy traffic jams brought about by heavy rainfall.
The Social Services Development Department has prepared a stockpile of goods for at least 100 families for quick dispatch.
Assistant City Engineer Robert L. Beltran said engineering teams have been declogging waterways to improve drainage and facilitate faster, more efficient outflow of floodwater, while the Parks Department and the Environmental Protection and Waste Management Department (EPWMD) have been trimming trees to reduce the risk of falling debris.