BAGUIO CITY (PIA) -- The Cordillera Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (CRDRRMC) is bracing for the impending threats of Typhoon Mawar (international name) which will possibly enter the Philippine Area of Responsibility as a super typhoon.
The CRDRRMC convened on Tuesday (May 23) for a Pre-Disaster Risk Assessment (PDRA) to analyze impacts and set preparedness actions on the typhoon's potential effects.
PAGASA-Baguio Chief Meteorological Officer Engr. Larry Esperanza reported that the weather bureau is continuously monitoring the movement of the typhoon but they cannot yet ascertain its exact direction because of its shifting movements.
"Kahapon kasi, pa-northwest siya pero ngayon, nagno-northward. Ibig sabihin, nagre-recurve po siya pataas. Kung ating ia-analyze itong si Mawar, maliit po 'yung possibility na ito ay mag-landfall sa ating kalupaan pero dahil ang galaw po ng isang bagyo ay hindi natin maeksakto, may mga pagbabago po 'yan habang papalapit itong si Mawar," Esperanza explained.
Meanwhile, the Mines and Geosciences Bureau - Cordillera (MGB-CAR) reported that there are 81 barangays in the region which are susceptible to landslides and flooding, based on the DOST PAGASA Rainfall Data as of 2:00 AM of May 22, 2023. Charie Santos of MGB-CAR assured that the list of these barangays will be forwarded to the concerned LGUs for suitable action.
With the impending threat of the tropical cyclone, Office of Civil Defense - Cordillera and CRDRRMC Chairperson Albert Mogol enjoined the MGB and the DENR, in coordination with the LGUs and concerned agencies, to review and enforce mining laws and protocols to ensure the safety not only the miners but also the host communities of mine sites.
"Tandaan po natin 'yung nangyari nung Ompong ... Let us learn from these experience in the past. I urge the local government units, local DRRMCs, mag-conduct tayo ng risk assessment and let us warn our people, let us prepare for any worst-case scenario that may happen," Mogol said.
"Zero casualty pa rin ang dapat nating maging layunin," he stressed. "Ituloy lang po natin ang gawain natin bilang isang Team Cordillera. Maging basehan lang po natin lagi ang ating mga karanasan at mga aral na natututunan sa mga nagdaang disaster management operations."
The CRDRRMC chair also called on the Department of Tourism to take the lead in ensuring tourism safety. Mogol said that the Standard Operating Procedure for Tourism Risk and Crisis Related Incidence for Rainy Seasons must be properly implemented - that tourism activities must be stopped if risks are prevailing in tourism areas.
He also asked the Benguet PDRRMO to reimplement dam safety programs and efforts particularly to the communities to be affected by water releases.
"Let us anticipate and prepare for the worst-case scenario. Huwag po tayong kampante kasi mas maigi na 'yung prepared kaysa 'yung kung kailan nandiyan na, saka pa lang tayo kikilos. I encourage everyone to be proactive," Mogol pressed.
In preparation for the possible effects of the typhoon, the Department of Social Welfare and Development -CAR reported a total of P104,596,251.52 standby funds and stockpile that includes 40,680 family food packs (FFPs) and 28,000 non-food items. With the expected delivery of 10,500 FFPs from the DSWD National Resource Operation Center to the warehouses of DSWD Field Office - CAR, the regional stockpile will be increased to 51,180 FFPs.
Other response clusters and local DRRMCs also assured that their preparedness measures are in place for the looming super typhoon. (JDp/DEG-PIA CAR)