A sudden torrential rain yesterday morning flooded many parts of Dumaguete City and left people scrambling for safety with more than a dozen houses submerged and streets rendered impassable after the Banica River spilled over.
Acting Mayor Alan Gel Cordova, who supervised city government rescue teams that were deployed after flooding became apparent in several areas of Dumaguete, expressed relief that no casualties were reported in the few hours that water rose to knee deep or even higher in some areas.
But 10 houses in upper Banilad and two others in Candauay were reported to have been inundated.
Traffic was diverted from the national highway, starting at the boundary of Dumaguete and Bacong town upwards to the elevated barangays of Bajumpandan, Cantil-e, Junob and Talay as the road leading to the city was also flooded.
City personnel, upon Cordova’s orders, sealed off the spillways at Bagacay and Banilad and made sure that nobody insisted on crossing these to avoid a repeat of previous incidents where vehicles or people were carried downstream by rushing river waters.
Cordova said that while flooding subsided hours later in many parts of the city, at least two creeks at upper Banilad overflowed through fields.
The spillways in the Banilad-Bajumpandan loop road overflowed, with many motorists stranded even though some four-wheeled vehicles later managed to brave the flooding and crossed to the other side.
Affected residents earlier called for a meeting with barangay officials, the city engineers, and representatives from the mayor’s office to raise their concerns regarding the recurring flooding problem.
A rainfall reading report from the Energy Development Corporation-Southern Negros Geothermal Production Field in Valencia, Negros Oriental, told of intermittent heavy rainfall since Saturday evening.
Cordova said the city government will continue to be on the alert.
Other parts of Negros Oriental had sunny and clear skies yesterday.*JFP