Napocor: Safety protocols observed in dam water release
- Neil Jerome C. Morales (The Philippine Star) - August 11, 2012 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - State-owned National Power Corp. (Napocor) said it has complied with safety protocols in the release of water from the San Roque Dam in Pangasinan.

“Water releases from the San Roque Dam during the passage of tropical storm ‘Gener’ and the Aug. 7 monsoon rains were not responsible for the flooding in certain municipalities in Pangasinan,” Napocor said in a statement.

“The floods would have been significantly worse were it not for the flood control functions of the San Roque Dam,” said Romualdo Ma. Beltran, manager of Napocor’s dams, reservoirs and flood forecasting department.

At the height of Gener and the monsoon rains early this week, the reservoir of San Roque Dam temporarily stored close to 500 million cubic meters of water, Napocor data show.

It prevented flooding in areas downstream of the dam from getting worse, Napocor said.

Beltran said Napocor complied with existing dam water release protocols when it started spilling water from San Roque on Aug. 2.

During that period, water elevation in the dam reached 278 meters above sea level (masl), prompting Napocor to release water before breaching the normal high level of 280 masl.

“During typhoons, our employees carefully monitor the water elevations of the dams 24/7 precisely because we are concerned about the safety of residents who live downstream of the dams,” Beltran said.

Napocor also works closely with other government agencies like the disaster and weather bureaus to ensure that no lives or properties are placed in danger during the release of water, Beltran said.

As of 8 a.m. yesterday, the water level of San Roque stood at 280.35 masl. Only one gate of the dam remained open at 0.5 meters.

“Napocor expects the water level to go down to the 280 masl mark within the day, after which it will close the said gate,” the state-run firm said.

Two other dams being operated by Napocor – the Ambuklao and Binga – also had one gate each opened at 0.3 meters as of yesterday.

“The Angat and Caliraya dams remained closed throughout the passage of Gener and the Aug. 7 (monsoon),” Napocor said.

AMBUKLAO AND BINGA ANGAT AND CALIRAYA BELTRAN DAM GENER GENER AND THE AUG NAPOCOR NATIONAL POWER CORP SAN ROQUE SAN ROQUE DAM WATER
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