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Flights cancelled due to bad weather

MANILA, Philippines - A low-pressure area (LPA) off Mactan in Cebu forced the cancellation of at least two domestic flights yesterday.

The Department of Transportation and Communications said Cebu Pacific cancelled flights between Manila and Bohol.

As of 4 p.m. yesterday, the LPA was spotted at least 180 kilometers west of Dumaguete and embedded along the intertropical convergence zone (ITCZ).

“These weather systems are expected to bring moderate to occasionally heavy rains and thunderstorms in Palawan, Visayas and regions of Zamboanga peninsula, northern Mindanao, ARMM and SOCCSKSARGEN which may trigger flashfloods and landslides,” PAGASA said.

Metro Manila, Calabarzon, Bicol, the Visayas and Mindanao, the Mindoro provinces, Marinduque, and Romblon will have cloudy skies with light to moderate rain showers and thunderstorms.

The rest of Luzon will be partly cloudy to cloudy with isolated rain showers and thunderstorms.

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The   Coast Guard has stopped  all types of watercraft from plying the Sulu Sea because of the bad weather condition.

Lt. Cmdr. Jomark Angue, Coast guard station commander, said big waves had caused a wooden-hulled   passenger watercraft  known as pusu  and a jungkung pumpboat to sink in a private wharf in Sulu.

No casualties were reported, he added.

Sulu has been experiencing strong winds and heavy rains since early dawn yesterday.

In Zamboanga City, incessant rains have flooded at least eight barangays and affected 700 people.

Water from the mountains caused major rivers to swell and overflow, according to the City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (CDRRMC).

Two children were  killed and 131 individuals affected when a landslide   occurred in at least three areas in Barangay Limpapa on Saturday.

The City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Committee (CDRRMC) said another landslide occurred in barangays in Divisoria and Curuan Sunday afternoon but no casualty was reported.

Huge waves destroyed a footbridge in the coastal barangay of Maasin yesterday afternoon.

Incessant rains the whole of yesterday forced riverbanks in Zamboanga City to swell and  flood villages and affect at least 113 families or close to 565 individuals.

Zamboanga City Mayor Isabel Climaco-Salazar said some of the affected residents have been evacuated to schools and relief assistance provided for them. Disaster response teams have been mobilized and placed under alert for any emergency , she added.

Disaster personnel said floodwaters reached chest deep and have affected classrooms in Manicahan public school.

Salazar, CDRRMC chairman, said at least 10 families were evacuated from Barangay Manicahan east of Zamboanga City.

They are billeted at  a school, she added.

Salazar said residents of other affected barangays have not been evacuated as floodwaters have not reached  knee deep.

The CDRRMC is monitoring the weather and calamity-related incidents to guide responding rescue teams, she added.

No indication of La Niña

PAGASA sees no indication of La Niña affecting the country towards the end of the year.

“Most model forecasts continue to indicate ENSO(El Niño-Southern Oscillation)-neutral conditions through the remainder of 2013,” PAGASA said.

La Niña is the unusual cooling of the sea surface temperatures in the equatorial Pacific characterized by above normal rainfall.

PAGASA’s 2013 climate outlook showed that rainfall conditions for July-August-September season is likely to be near normal in most parts of the country, except for the provinces of Quezon, Camarines Norte, Catanduanes, some provinces in eastern Visayas, Davao region, Caraga and the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

The gradual recession of rains associated with the southwest monsoon is expected during the latter part of September up to early part of October, PAGASA added.

PAGASA said generally near normal rainfall conditions are likely to occur in most parts of the country from October to December, except in some areas in western Luzon.   – With Roel Pareño

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