Parañaque City Mayor Edwin L. Olivarez today said the absence of floods in the city, even in its most flood-prone areas, during Thursdaynight’s heavy downpour is a very encouraging sign that the city’s ongoing flood control program is working.
“This is just a first test, but the result is very heartening and encouraging,” the mayor said, noting that even though neighboring cities experienced heavy floods, the whole of Parañaque was flood-free Thursday night.
“Even our most flood-prone areas along Dr. A. Santos Avenue (Sucat Road), from Fourth Estate in the second district to San Dionisio and the vicinity of Multinational Village in the first district were all not flooded last night,” he said.
Mayor Olivarez attributed the welcome development to the various flood control measures that he initiated since assuming office nearly a year ago, including the clearing and rehabilitation of major waterways, the resettlement of informal settler families along the banks of the Parañaque River, and the purchase of modern dredging equipment.
He mentioned in particular the 300-meter flood diversion channel which the Department of Public Works and Highways and the city government jointly constructed along the boundary of Barangays San Dionisio and Moonwalk to hasten the flow of floodwaters from the Parañaque River to Manila Bay.
“I think it (diversion channel) is working very well,” Mayor Olivarez said. “But we have to wait until the really heavy rains come to see whether it is really effective in finally solving our flood problems for good. We are keeping our fingers crossed.”
The mayor launched an all-out flood control program after large swathes of the city were submerged during last year’s monsoon rains or Habagat which came in August, when he was barely two months in office.
1. Prepare an emergency kit that is good for at least three days:
- Flashlight (rechargeable)
- Battery-operated radio
- Extra batteries
- Fully-charged mobile phones
- Rescue aids like glow sticks and whistles
- First aid kit (medicine for headaches, fever, colds, diarrhea, etc.)
- Lots of bottle water
- Non-perishable foods
- Cash and credit cards
2. Safety reminders just in case floods hit your areas:
- Designate a meet-up location just in case someone in your family gets lost
- Talk to relatives who are not hit by floods if you can stay with them
- Gather important numbers like those of rescue teams (PNP, Fire Department, MMDA, etc.)
- Always tune in to radio, TV or internet for updates
- Evacuate if necessary
By Nathaniel Melican
MANILA, Philippines—An International consulting firm has assured the public that the planned reclamation of the Parañaque coastal area would help ease flooding in the city and in neighboring Las Piñas, contrary to environmental groups’ claims that the project would worsen flooding in the area.
DHI Water and Environment (S) Pte. Ltd., a Denmark-based consulting firm which specializes in environmental impact management with regional headquarters in Singapore, said the project would help mitigate the effects of rising sea levels.
DHI presented a technical study on the reclamation project, reportedly a joint venture between Las Piñas and Parañaque, and the Philippine Reclamation Authority, during a recent public consultation on the project.
According to the firm, the reclamation project would help reduce flooding from storm surges in Parañaque and Las Piñas as it would involve the dredging of the mouths of the Parañaque, Las Piñas and Zapote rivers.
The removal of a sandbar at the mouth of the Las Piñas river is also expected to improve the water flow during heavy rains, DHI said.
The reclamation project covers 635.14 hectares of water in Manila Bay, and will run through Freedom Island, the last ecological reserve in Metro Manila.
Project proponents are planning to build a business center and a highway on the reclaimed land.
But various environmental groups, under the Save Freedom Island Movement, are opposed to the project, saying that contrary to DHI’s assertions, eight barangays in Parañaque and 14 in Las Piñas will experience worse flooding due to the project.
The group also claimed, the project would affect the livelihood of some 10,000 fishermen and vendors in the area.
Furthermore, the group claimed that the project would destroy Freedom Island.
But this was disputed by DHI, which said that reclamation would instead improve management of the area.
Good news for Parañaque residents! The Maynilad Water Services Inc. (MWSI) will again render free septic tank desludging services for its patrons in the city on September 27, 2010 (Monday). This is aimed at preventing the clogging of residential sewage systems and providing a clean and healthy environment for its customers. “I encourage Parañaque residents whose areas are covered by this service to avail of this MWSI offer since it does not only clear homes of harmful wastes, it is also free of charge.”, Mayor Jun Bernabe said. The Parañaque areas covered by the service are Barangays Sto. Niño, Tambo, BF Homes, San Dionisio and San Antonio Valley 1. Maynilad sewerage personnel will also be in selected areas of Manila and Valenzuela on Sept. 27 and Malabon and Navotas on Sept. 30 to clean septic tanks at no cost to the customers. Those interested in availing of this service may call 981-3401 and 981-3402 for the complete schedule and requisites. Visit http://www.mayniladwater.com.ph/services-02.php. for the complete details.