Typhoon Huaning hits Ilocos
by Aleli Aggasid-Batara
LAOAG CITY (12 August) -- The public warning system in the city was sounded off late last night as the center of tropical storm "Huaning" moved towards Ilocos Norte and nearby provinces of Apayao, Abra, Calayan Group of Islands and Batanes Groups of Islands.
Based on the latest weather bulletin from the Philippine Athmospheric and Geophysical Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) the center of "Huaning" was estimated at 150 kms. northwest of Laoag City with maximum sustained winds of 75 kph near the center and gustiness up to 95 kph.
The City Disaster Coordinating Council convened as early as 4:00 a.m. today and set-up its operations center at the city hall with the members from the Philippine National Police (PNP), City Health Office (CHO), City Social Welfare Office (CSWO), Community Affairs Office (CAO), Department of Public Safety (DPS), Philippine Information Agency (PIA) and other local agencies.
Mayor Michael V. Fariñas conducted an ocular inspection around the city and in flood prone areas early this morning and reported that there are no problems and incidents of flooding so far, even with the continuous heavy downpour.
He noted that the water level at the Padsan river remain relatively low posing no threat to barangays along the riverside. Meanwhile, a dike near Divine Word College is being monitored because it is already at a critical level, he said.
Fariñas ascertained the availability of relief goods for distribution to flood victims. He added that by virtue of a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the National Food Authority (NFA), the local government can easily get additional rice supply, he added.
"God forbid that the weather condition worsen and we need substantial funding, I will call for a special session so that the Sannguniang Panlungsod will be able to release additional funds and declare the city in a state of calamity," he said.
Fariñas advised his constituents to stay at home where they will be safer. He also reminded fisherfolks and farmers to refrain from going to the sea and fields to prevent similar incidents in the past of drowning and being struck by lightning.
"We cannot predict the weather, di tay ammo nu annat sumarsaruno (we do not know hat will happen next), be that as it may be, we will be prepared for any eventuality," Fariñas assured his constituents. (PIA Ilcoos) [top]