MANILA, Philippines (4th UPDATE) – Water level at the Marikina River rose again Friday night, prompting authorities to raise a 3rd-level alarm at around 8:30 p.m.
Marikina public information officer Paul Edward Sison said the river's water level has risen to 17 meters from 14.7 meters earlier recorded at 2 p.m.
The rapid increase of water level was caused by heavy rains over the Marikina watershed area, according to Marikina Vice Mayor Jose Cadiz.
Cadiz denied reports that a damaged wall of the Wawa Dam caused the swelling of the river.
“Hindi totoo na tumaas dahil may nasirang dam sa Marikina River, hindi totoo ‘yan. Tumaas ang tubig dahil sa lakas ng ulan at sarado ang anim na floodgate. Ngayon ay binuksan na ang lahat ng gate kaya kami ay umaasa na unti-unti ng bababa ang tubig,” Cadiz told dzMM.
Under alarm level 3, residents in the vicinity of the river are advised to evacuate their homes.
It was later lowered to alarm level 2 after the river's water level fell to 16.9 meters around 2:30 a.m.
Cadiz said several residents left their homes Friday night when the alarm level 3 was raised.
If the water level exceeds 18 meters, a forced evacuation will be ordered.
The river’s water level reached as high as 17.5 meters at around 10:22 p.m. -- With a report from Robert Mano, dzMM