4 dead in Isabela, Cagayan floods
Raymund Catindig (The Philippine Star) - December 8, 2019 - 12:00am

TUGUEGARAO CITY, Cagayan, Philippines — Massive flooding in Isabela and Cagayan since Wednesday left four persons dead.

Police said the body of 63-year-old farmer Hilario Bersamin was recovered in a corn field in Barangay Sto. Tomas in Ilagan City, Isabela yesterday.

Bersamin reportedly drowned while trying to save his belongings from his house, which was submerged in floodwater.

The bodies of two other victims were recovered in Tumauini on Friday.

In Cagayan, the body of an unidentified victim was recovered along the seashore in Barangay Linao, Aparri.

At least 13,098 persons were displaced by flashfloods in this province.

The Cagayan Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO) said 3,591 families in 15 towns and this city are staying at 117 evacuation centers.

The CDRRMO said 167 barangays remain flooded.


Ricardo Jalad, National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council executive director, said 31 road sections and 29 bridges damaged by floods and landslides in Cagayan and the Cordilleras remained closed to traffic yesterday.

Jalad and local disaster officials conducted an aerial inspection to assess the extent of the damage.

 In Sta. Ana, five houses were buried in a landslide in Barangay Rapuli.

Power has yet to be restored in Sanchez Mira, Sta. Praxedes, Bagao and this city.

Marines and Coast Guard personnel were deployed to conduct search, rescue and retrieval operations in flooded and landslide-hit areas.

Additional military personnel are on standby for deployment in Cagayan Valley.

Edwin Viernes of the National Irrigation Administration denied claims that flashfloods were due to the release of water from Magat Dam.

Viernes said notices of water release on Tuesday and Friday were aborted after the dam managed to contain the rainfall.

“There are 20 river tributaries of Cagayan River. Magat River is one of them, but it has a gated dam to contain flood flow,” he said.

Cloudy skies

The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said the tail-end of a cold front would continue to affect the eastern section of Northern Luzon.

“Cagayan, Babuyan Islands, Isabela and Apayao will have cloudy skies with scattered rains and thunderstorms due to the tail-end of a cold front,” the state weather bureau said.

The Cordilleras, Ilocos, Northern Aurora and the rest of Cagayan Valley will experience cloudy skies with scattered light rains due to the northeast monsoon.

PAGASA said coastal waters in Northern Luzon would be rough. – With Jaime Laude, Rhodina Villanueva

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