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Friday, May 24, 2024

Agri damage due to Bulusan hit P20 million—NDRRMC

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The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) said an estimated P20 million worth of damage in agriculture has been reported due to the activity of Bulusan Volcano in Sorsogon.

“The assessment that was provided was only an initial assessment so currently we’re still at P20 million,” NDRRMC spokesperson Mark Timbal, in an ABS-CBN report said.

The Department of Agriculture set up evacuation sites for livestock to protect them from the dangers of ashfall and provide assistance to affected local farmers, ABS-CBN reported, quoting the official.

Timbal said ashfall from Bulusan has already stopped and cleaning activities are now being done in the concerned areas.

Bulusan Volcano had a phreatic eruption on Sunday that lasted for 17 minutes prompting the local government to evacuate residents. The municipalities of Juban, Casiguran, and Irosin experienced ashfall.

President Rodrigo Duterte meanwhile assured the people affected by the eruption that help is coming as the government agencies will be there to extend assistance.

“I will just reiterate that you — people who are affected there in Sorsogon,  especially those in  barangay which the government has — forecasted to be the worst scenario, there will be a lot of movement of people. But I’m sure that the government can cope up and will be there to help everybody,” Duterte said during his Talk to the People program.

Office of Civil Defense administrator Undersecretary Ricardo Jalad said that in a worst-case scenario, there is a total of 446 evacuation centers available in Sorsogon to house evacuees.

Mandatory or forced evacuation for the municipality of Irosin in Sorsogon will be carried out once the alert level is raised to three or four, said Jalad, who is also the executive director of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC).

Irosin sits on the caldera of Mt. Bulusan and a major eruption will force people to evacuate outside the 9-kilometer danger zone, he added.

Also part of the contingency plan of the Regional Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council in Bicol Region is asking the support of nearby provinces in case Mt. Bulusan erupts further.

“All in all in Bicol Region has a total of  2,425 evacuation centers that are available. And should our kababayan allow­—they will be evacuated to as far as Masbate, Catanduanes and Camarines Norte have enough evacuation centers,” he said. With Vito Barcelo

Jalad reported that a total of 2,784 families or 13,920 individuals were affected by the ashfall, mostly in the municipalities of Irosin and Juban. With Vito Barcelo

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