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3 dead, 3 missing in Bicol floods

Cet Dematera (The Philippine Star) - January 4, 2021 - 12:00am

LEGAZPI CITY, Philippines — Three persons died while three others were reported missing in bad weather that has been prevailing in the Bicol region as well as in other areas of the country since the New Year.

Flashfloods and landslides triggered by heavy rains compelled several families to flee from their homes, the Office of Civil Defense (OCD) reported yesterday.

More than 9,000 people were affected by the floods that occurred in Bicol, Central Luzon and Mimaropa (Mindoro, Marinduque, Romblon and Palawan), according to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council.

Gremil Alexis Naz, spokesperson for the OCD-Bicol, identified the fatalities as Ceejay Raro, Edwin Cecilio and Jonel Medinilla.

Raro and Cecilio drowned when their boat capsized in the waters off Canaman town in Camarines Sur. Two fishermen were reported missing in the incident.

Reports said strong winds and big waves battered the boat, causing it to capsize.

The OCD-Bicol has yet to receive the complete list of missing persons.

Medinilla drowned in floodwaters and his body was recovered in Pilar, Sorsogon.

Search and rescue operation was launched for a 13-year-old boy who was carried away by the current in Barangay Managanaga in Bulan, Sorsogon.

“We are expecting more reports from areas that experienced flooding due to continuous, moderate to heavy rains induced by the prevailing tail-end of a frontal system over Bicol,” Naz told The STAR.

At least 106 flood incidents were reported in 26 towns and three cities in Bicol, mostly in Sorsogon and Camarines Sur, Naz said, adding that 24 landslides occurred in 15 towns and two cities in the same provinces.

1 dead in Negros

Meanwhile, a man died as flashfloods submerged three cities and a municipality in Negros Occidental since New Year’s Eve, authorities reported yesterday.

Ramil Panes, 26, was found dead along the shores of Barangay 6-A in Victorias City on Saturday.

Panes was last seen having a drinking spree with his friends on Dec. 31, according to provincial disaster management program division chief Zeaphard Caelian.

More than a hundred houses were destroyed in the floods that occurred in 42 barangays in EB Magalona town as well as in the cities of Silay, Talisay and Victorias.

Warning

The public has been warned against floods and landslides as the tail-end of a frontal system would still bring rains over the eastern section of Luzon today.

Samuel Duran, weather forecaster of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration, said the weather system is expected to move toward Cagayan Valley and Bicol.

Apart from isolated rains due to thunderstorms, good weather is expected today over the western part of Ilocos region, the Cordilleras and Metro Manila as well as in the western sections of Calabarzon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon) and Mimaropa. – Gilbert Bayoran, Helen Flores, Romina Cabrera

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