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PIA Press Release
2008/07/23

DPWH heeds PGMA directive; fixes 28 of 35 Frank-damaged bridges in Panay Island

Manila (23 July) -- Heeding the President's direct order during a recent Cabinet meeting in Iloilo City for it to immediately fix the road network destroyed by typhoon Frank in Panay island, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) says it has so far fixed some 28 of the total 35 bridges that were rendered impassable by the killer typhoon.

"The 28 bridges are now passable and seven were provided with alternate routes and/or footbridges," the DPWH said in its latest media advisory.

The DPWH added that "all road sections are now also passable in the region (Region VI)" even as the department is "still providing assistance to local government(s) and the Provincial Disaster Coordinating Council (PDCC) in conducting clearing operations" in towns and barangays affected by mudslide.

The DPWH said the 35 bridges and 26 road sections that were damaged by typhoon 'Frank' cost P1.8 billion.

"A total of 28 typhoon-affected bridges out of 35 unpassable bridges (are) now accessible to motorists," enthused the Region VI offices of the DPWH which reported its continued rehabilitation efforts on damaged infrastructure in Western Visayas.

"In his report to DPWH Secretary Hermogenes E. Ebdane Jr., DPWH Region VI Director Rolando Asis added that "the immediate restoration of the damaged roads and bridges are vital to assure the immediate delivery of relief goods to major evacuation areas."

The DPWH is now undertaking the preliminary works for the design of the permanent replacements for the bridges that were totally destroyed, according to Asis who also said that "feasibility studies are now (being) undertaken on how to upgrade infrastructure to mitigate the effects that may result if flood of the same magnitude will be again encountered."

"Meanwhile, Aklan District Engineer Robert Cabigas proposed… the reactivation of the moth-balled Aklan River Basin Development (ARBD) to mitigate flooding in Aklan province… the hardest hit province in Panay when Aklan River overflowed to the capital towns of Kalibo and other low-lying municipalities."

Cabigas said Aklan province alone needs P70.8 Million for the rehabilitation of damaged infrastructure. (PIA-MMIO) [top]

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