BACOLOD CITY, Negros Occidental, Philippines – Weather bureau PAGASA has raised the classification of Auring into a Severe Tropical Storm, the severe weather bulletin revealed.
As this developed, certain areas in Mindanao have been placed under Tropical Cyclone Wind Signal No. 1. These areas are in Davao Oriental, the eastern portion of Davao de Oro (Pantukan, Maragusan, New Bataan, Compostela, Monkayo), the eastern portion of Agusan del Sur (Sibagat, Bayugan City, Prosperidad, Talacogon, San Francisco, Rosario, Bunawan, Santa Josefa, Trento), and Surigao del Sur.
Meanwhile, the Bacolod City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (CDRRMC), chaired by Mayor Evelio Leonardia, is “ready to respond to any emergency that may be brought by “Auring” in the coming days.
Leonardia directed Executive Assistant Jose Ma. Vargas to convene the CDRRMC for a Pre-Disaster Risk Assessment and Emergency Preparedness for Response, yesterday 19 February at 3:00 p.m. at the Annex Building of the Bacolod City Government Center.
“[Auring] is estimated to hit Bacolod on Sunday evening or Monday morning. We are very cautious of flood-prone areas such as those in Barangay 2, 8, 10, 16, Bata, Banago, Pahanocoy, and Villamonte,” Vargas said.
The CDRRMC has already set up a Command Center at the Annex Building of the Bacolod City Government Center.
“All the reports will be conveyed at the Command Center and the response teams will also be stationed there,” Vargas said.
He added: “In our meeting [today], we already coordinated with the rescue, transportation, and evacuation facilities of the DepEd. The police will handle the patrolling; the BFP will provide water in our evacuation center; and the City Health Office will manage the medical facilities if ever there will be evacuation. We will also be activating our barangay health centers.”
Vargas assured the public that the city’s emergency response system is ready. He advised everyone to immediately contact barangay officials or the police, whoever is nearer, in case of emergency.
Attending the CDRRMC meeting today were Dr. Ma. Laarni Pornan of the City Health Office, SFO1 Restito Salaon of Bureau of Fire Protection, Teddy Gicalde of DepEd-Bacolod, Peter John Sanchez and Kris Dela Cruz of DRRMO-EMS, Lt. Col. Lester Leada of Bacolod City Police Office, Mike Gorne of Amity-Bacolod, Sally Abelarde and Christine Mae Treyes of Department of Social Services and Development, April Joy Maquiling representing Liga ng mga Barangay, and Jose Evram Vera of DRRMO-Bacolod Research and Planning Section.
Auring has now intensified in tropical storm, the latest weather bulletin from weather bureau PAGASA said.
The weather bureau said today through tomorrow afternoon, light to moderate with at times heavy rainshowers over Caraga, Davao Oriental, Davao de Oro, and Davao del Norte.
Tomorrow afternoon through Sunday morning, heavy to intense rains over Caraga Region. Moderate to heavy with at times intense rains over Eastern Visayas, Misamis Oriental, Camiguin, Bukidnon, Davao del Norte, Davao Oriental, and Davao de Oro. Light to moderate with at times heavy rains over the rest of Visayas, the rest of Northern Mindanao, Albay, Sorsogon, Catanduanes, Masbate, Lanao del Sur, Cotabato, and Davao City.
Under these conditions, scattered to widespread flooding (including flash floods) and rain-induced landslides are likely during heavy or prolonged rainfall especially in areas that are highly or very highly susceptible to these hazards as identified in hazard maps. Adjacent or nearby areas may also experience flooding in the absence of such rainfall occurrence due to surface runoff or swelling of river channels. PAGASA Regional Services Divisions may issue local thunderstorm/rainfall advisories and heavy rainfall warnings while the Hydrometeorology Division and River Basin Flood Forecasting and Warning Centers may issue General Flood Advisories and Basin Flood Bulletins as appropriate.