By Niño Luces
LEGAZPI CITY, Albay – At least 760 families or around 3,800 individuals were forced to leave their residences threatened by flooding and lahar as Tropical Cyclone Warning Signal No. 1 was raised in the Bicol region ahead of Ompong’s onslaught.
Dr. Cedric Daep, Albay Public Safety and Emergency Management Office (APSEMO) chief, said classes in all levels have been suspended and all necessary emergency and response measures are already in place.
In Guinobatan, Mayor Gemma Y. Ongjoco told The Manila Bulletin that at least 750 families or equivalent to more or less 3,750 individuals coming from barangays of Maninila, Tandarora and 3 Sitios of Muladbucad Grande were evacuated to safer place.
Ongjoco, said those residents were on the path of lahar and mudflow once the heavy rains brought by the typhoon sets in.
In Polangui town, OIC-Mayor Herbert Borja said that at least 10 families were evacuated from two villages – Ubaliw and Balangibang – to the JICA building in Polangui North Central School due to threat from severe flooding.
“Ito yung mga residente na very critical sa baha, most of them nakatira dun sa gitna ng palayan sa Ubaliw (These are the residents that are critically threatened by floods because most of them live in the middle of ricefields in Ubaliw),” Borja said.
In Daraga, 211 individuals were evacuated to Binitayan Elementary School since Thursday. These individuals are threatened from mudflow, lahar and other volcanic debris.
Daep said APSEMO was also monitoring flooding in Barangays Soa, Oras, and Igot in the municipality of Malinao.