BUTUAN CITY, Philippines – The continuous heavy flooding brought about by low pressure in all provinces and cities in the Caraga region since Sunday night has caused the overflowing of the Agusan River, inundating and isolating several towns while several areas are currently isolated because of destroyed bridges and roads and shortage of power and water supply.
Authorities also said floods and slide victims have swelled to 56,135 families or 281,638 persons from the 386 barangays from various parts in the region while three persons were reported killed and two others missing as of press time.
The region’s capital city alone has been declared for the second time under a state of calamity since early this year, with at least 9,243 families or about 60,979 persons as of Wednesday’s posting by the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (CDRRMC) severely affected by floods as more than 80 barangays in the city, especially the city proper are already flooded as the swelling Agusan River has affected all streets and major thoroughfares, causing business establishments to close shop, classes suspended in all levels, and the stoppage of works, both in government and private.
The water level of the giant Agusan River in Butuan City has increased to 3.6 meters high and flood water in the city proper is already knee-deep.
Rescue teams of CDRRMC are already using pump boats and speed boats in rescuing flood victims at Barangays, Mahay, Banza, Buhangin and nearby barangays along the riverbanks of Butuan City.
As of 6 a.m. Wednesday, the Butuan CDRRMC team retrieved the body of Gaudencio Donayon, 75 at neck-level flood waters in Purok 3, Barangay Buhangin this city.
Another body, that of Gaudencio Amoro, 50 of Sibagat town, Agusan del Sur, was also found on Rosales Avenue here, on Wednesday morning.
Butuan City Mayor Ferdinand Amante Jr. Wednesday asked President Benigno S. Aquino III for relief assistance to thousands of flood victims in the city since Sunday night. The City Chief Executive also asked the socio-civic organizations to help extend assistance to flood victims now sheltered at various evacuation centers in the city.
The largest number of floods and slides victims is reported in the Pacific Ocean-facing province of Surigao del Norte and Surigao City where to date the RDRRMC and PDRRMC reported 20,000 families or about 103, 121 persons were already affected.
The PDRRMC of Agusan del Norte also reported 8,813 families or 42,526 persons were affected by floods and slides while Agusan del Sur PDRRMC also reported 4,122 families or 24,688 persons affected since Sunday flooding. The Surigao del Sur and Bislig City DRRMC also reported 528 families or about 2,655 persons were also severely affected.