MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) is calling on local government units near waterways and dams to keep track nonstop the information, alerts and warnings issued by the agency for timely and adequate response during disasters.
This, after the Marikina River rose a meter beyond critical levels around 2:30 Thursday morning, almost catching authorities unawares and with most everyone in the area fast asleep.
Weather specialist Mario Raymundo said authorities can get information on Marikina River's water levels by going to www.pagasa.dost.gov.ph and clicking the blue icon "Project Noah" on the lower left hand side of the webpage. Table refreshes every 10 minutes, ensuring that information is real-time.
Raymundo said during times when local authorities have no Internet connection or electricity, they should call PAGASA to get the required data.
"Dapat po kasi po warning agents lang ang PAGASA. Sila po ang apektado, dapat po sila ang tumawag sa amin," he said. But ideally, he said: "Dapat po, especially ang LGUs, dapat nakatutok sila (sa Project Noah webpage)."
There are also links on the webpage on the status of various dams in Luzon.
Pagasa also said it was keeping a close watch on Angat Dam, where water levels have been rising steadily since 6:00 this morning. As of 12 noon today, Angat's level was at 211.83 meters, about a meter away from the spilling level.
"Medyo critical ng konti ang Angat sapagkat kapag nagkaroon ng releasing, ang daraanan ng tubig Bulacan, especially Calumpit, Hagonoy na kung saan nandoon na ang baha, madadagdagan pa," Raymundo said.