WORST THAN THE DAILY HIGH TIDE FLOOD. Residents in Hagonoy brace for worst floods in their town because of the back-flooding of waters from Nueva Ecija and Pampanga while high tide is at 4.9 ft. on Tuesday and as Ipo and Bustos dams had been releasing waters including the continued rains now brought by typhoon Falcon. Photo by Anton Luis Catindig

CITY OF MALOLOS—The up to 6 ft. flood waters in low lying areas in Bulacan subsided on Monday but rains brought by typhoon Egay and southwest monsoon have affected more than 900,000 residents from 228,648 families in most of the 24 towns and cities and posted an initial P83 million worth of damages to agriculture which prompted Gov. Daniel Fernando to declare the province under state of calamity. 

Vice Gov. Alex Castro and the whole of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan approved Resolution 579-T’2023 yesterday that placed the entire province under state of calamity. A total of 171 out of 572 barangays were affected wherein 21,367 individuals from 5,631 families were evacuated to safer grounds due to flooding in their respective areas.

Suspension of work on Monday also includes private offices. From Thursday until Friday, all government works and classes both public and private were suspended due to rains and floods. 

Fernando also confirmed the death of four residents due to drowning and flood related incidents. 

John Mark Arcega, 20 from Sta. Lucia, Calumpit was drowned at the height of the high rise of flood waters on Friday. 

Frank David Domingo Santos, 14 from Maligaya, San Miguel town died of drowning on Saturday. 

Virgilio Santos, 69, from Florante St. in Barangay Panginay, Balagtas town died from a self-accident when he fell to the cemented floor of their flooded house. His 70 year old neighbor, Policarpio Gatchalian died of a heart attack while being evacuated to safer grounds.  

Reports that reached Fernando said almost the whole 24 towns and cities were submerged in floods while the number of evacuated residents rose to nearly 18,000.   

Fernando who led a relief distribution to 1,500 affected families in Barangay Sta. Ctuz in Guiguinto on Monday morning said initial damages to infrastructure are still being assessed. 

Also on Monday, back-flooding of flood waters from Pampanga and Nueva Ecija has started and further worsen the swollen Calumpit, Hagonoy and Paombong rivers, the catch basin of flood waters bound for Manila Bay, Bulacan PDRRMO chief Manuel Lukban Jr., said. 

Bustos Ipo dams continue to release water. At 16.21 meters against 17.36 meters spilling level, Bustos dam discharges 106 cubic meter per second (cms). Ipo Dam with 101.00 meters spilling level at 101.09 meters releases 34 cms. 

Angat Dam was at 195. 10 meters above sea level (masl) and is still meters away from its 210. 00 masl normal high water elevation. 

Fernando on Monday also proceeded to Congress to attend a committee hearing on filed bills to address the perennial flooding in the province. 

He called on the members of the House of Representatives to prioritize the urgent and comprehensive solution to the decade-old problem of flooding in the province during the Technical Working Group Meeting of the House Committee on Public Works and Highways yesterday.

“Kailangan ito ay mapag-aralan natin at mabigyan ito ng solusyon sa pamamagitan ng isang matindi at maayos na master plan. Sana ay masuportahan ang aming lalawigan regarding sa mga nangyayaring pagbaha po sa amin. Hindi po namin ito kakayanin kung kami lang,” the governor said.