BUTUAN CITY – More than 2,000 were displaced by tropical depression Vicky, which exited Caraga region late Friday, December 18.
Absorbing the brunt of the tropical depression were areas in the southern and northern parts of Surigao del Sur where more than 1,600 families were affected by the flash floods.
“We are still collecting data from our different municipal and city disaster councils, but as of this time more than 1,600 families were already affected by the flash floods,” said Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Managements Council (PDRRMC) Head Abel De Guzman, in phone interview with The Manila Bulletin on Saturday.
“We are still receiving reports from the field while our relief operations are still moving per instruction of Surigao del Sur Gov. Alexander Pimentel,” the PDRRMC official added.
Meanwhile, some provincial and municipal roads, including parts of the Maharlika National Highway in Agusan del Sur, were inundated by flash floods due to the weather disturbance.
Disaster task forces of the regional and provincial offices of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), upon the directive of Caraga Regional Director Engr. Pol M. Delos Santos, have been deployed in affected areas to clear the debris blocking the roads.
On the other hand, the disaster action center and regional office of the Department of Social Services and Development (DSWD) based here has also mobilized action officers to coordinate with local government units (LGUs) affected by the flash floods for relief operations for affected residents.
Government troops, particularly the Army’s Third Special Forces Battalion (3rd SFBn), and other uniformed personnel and civilian volunteers also continued relief operations in affected areas.
“Our troops are already on the ground assisting the personnel of disaster risk reduction and management councils (DRRMCs) and social workers for the immediate needs of the affected residents,” 3rd SFBn Civil Military Operations (CMO) officer told The Manila Bulletin on Saturday.
As of 9.p.m. on Friday, several areas in barangays Mangagoy, Tabon, Bucto, Cumawas, Pamanlinan, San Roque and San Antonio, all in Bislig City were under water.
According to an initial report from Surigao del Sur PDRRMC the barangays Payasan, Ban-as, and Sitio Lawis, Banahao, all in Lianga town, and Barangays Buhisan and Buatong in San Agustin town, and in Barangay Caras-an in Tago town, and parts of Tagbina and Barobo, all in Surigao del Sur, were flooded.
Initial report also indicated that more than 20 families (71 individuals) from Kauswagan and nine families (29 individuals) in Buhisan, all in San Agustin town of that same province were displaced due to flash floods, while 26 families from Barangay Amontay in Marihatag town; 2 families in Barangay Javier in Barobo town; 20 families from Barangay Mangagoy, 10 families in Barangay Tabon and more than 200 families in Barangay Pamanlinan, all in Bislig City also evacuated to different evacuation centers in that southern-tip city.
On the other hand, an undetermined number of residents in Barangays Payasan, Ban-as and Banahao in Lianga town and Barangays Buhisan and Buatong in San Agustin town, all in Surigao del Sur, were also evacuated to safer grounds, Punsalan added.
More than 300 families were also reportedly affected by flash floods in the towns of San Francisco, Rosario, Bunawan, Prosperidad, Sta. Josefa, Talacogon and other parts in Agusan del Sur.
Meanwhile, Agusan del Sur Governor Santiago Cane and Agusan del Norte Governor Dale Corvera have mobilized their respective PDRRMCs personnel to check and assist all affected residents due to the typhoon.
As of press time, both PDRRMCs were still conducting on the ground assessment on the number of affected families for possible relief assistance.
The Butuan City Disaster and Risk Reduction Management Council (CDRRMC) here said they are also closely monitoring the water level at Agusan River.
There was no reported casualty in the Caraga region, according to assessment of damage being undertaken by all concerned line agencies of the government.