4 Isabela towns brace for 'Pedring' onslaught

By Atom Araullo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 26 2011 02:50 PM | Updated as of Sep 26 2011 10:50 PM

Isabela province is now bracing for typhoon Pedring, which is expected to make landfall somewhere between Aurora and Isabela Tuesday evening or Wednesday morning.

An emergency meeting by the provincial disaster risk reduction and management council (PDRRMC) was held Monday morning to discuss preparations for the coming storm. Intermittent rains are already being felt in the province, although the winds have yet to pick up in strength.

Officials said four towns on the other side of the Sierra Madre facing the Pacific Ocean may bear the brunt of the typhoon.

Governor Faustino Dy III said officials in Dinapigue, Palanan, Divilacan and Maconacon have been instructed to prepare for Pedring.

"Nangangamba kami sa towns na yan kasi hindi accessible. The only way to go there is by boat or by helicopter. Pero nakahanda na naman ang LGUs sa lugar na iyan, they have supplies and their evacuation centers are ready," Dy said.

The Philippine National Police and Armed Forces have already raised their alert levels, with their rescue units on standby.

Classes in Isabela for Tuesday have been suspended on all levels.

In anticipation of the coming typhoon, Magat Dam has also begun releasing water into the Cagayan River. Officials said this is a precautionary measure to prevent the sudden release of water during the height of the storm.