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August 20, 2013

Flood, Sweat And Tears: Habagat Stories of 2013

   Just like last year, the monsoon rains intensified by the nearby typhoon Maring brought flood to Metro Manila and neighboring provinces. For two days, we could not leave our apartment because of the rising flood waters in our area. Because of the bad weather, we even had to cancel our scheduled leadership retreat and colloquium for our mayors and municipal health officers who were as of this writing are holed up at the Retreat venue in Novaliches. Meanwhile, we are monitoring the latest weather updates and flood reports in the news.

   The monsoon surge has brought a significant amount of rainfall in the area. The entire street fronting our apartment all the way to Taft Avenue (in the vicinity of De La Salle University) was flooded with knee-deep to waist-deep waters.

   Early this morning, we went out of the apartment's lobby to take some pictures of the scenes in the neighborhood.

Bring in the boats

Ongoing excavation of Maynilad making this intersection dangerous  
Rushing flood waters along Estrada Street

Waterworld: Habagat Floods

Strangers helping strangers

Tuloy lang mga tsong: May liwanag ang buhay

Making sure they are dry: inflatable raft passing by

   Later, these pictures which I eventually uploaded via twitter were also featured on National TV (ABS-CBN's TV Patrol) during primetime news, along with other pictures from other people who were also victims of the flood. They were again featured in the late night news (ABS-CBN's Bandila).

   In times like this, everyone must be conscious about their safety and health. Among the dangers this disaster can bring are water-borne diseases such as Leptospirosis and skin diseases. Of course, trauma due to debris in rushing flood waters or flood-related accidents is a top cause of death during this situation. For those who are without shelter and defense against the cold rain and flood waters, hypothermia can also be a risk factor. What everyone needs now are shelter and protection from the bad weather. Evacuating to safer grounds is a priority. Once in safe grounds, other basic needs will follow.

 As of writing, flood waters seem to be receding. Hopefully, tomorrow morning, things will be better.

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