Taguig City steps up preparations as ‘Ompong’ intensifies

MANILA The Taguig City government has stepped up preparations as Typhoon "Ompong" entered the Philippine Area of Responsibility on Wednesday.

ER Palima, officer-in-charge of the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office, said boats, trucks and other rescue vehicles have already been prepositioned for the rescue, and preemptive and forced evacuations of affected TaguigeAos.

Vests, ropes, cutters, shovels, megaphones and other pertinent items are also ready.

Eugene Bilaw, officer-in-charge of the city's Solid Waste Management Office, said that even if clearing operations of creeks has been ongoing once a week � daily for the Lake and River Management Office heavy equipment used to dredge these have also been placed on standby.

Evacuation centers that will house affected TaguigeAos are also ready, with the tents to be used already prepositioned, Nikki Rose Operario, officer-in-charge of the City Social Welfare Development Office, said. The city government has also prepositioned 1,000 food packs.

She said her office was also preparing an additional 1,000 food packs should there be a need to distribute more.

Each food pack usually contains rice, canned goods and noodles, she said.

According to Operario, the food packs are apart from the blankets, water, energy biscuits and hygiene kits affected residents receive. Each hygiene kit, she said, contains a toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, shampoo and a small towel.

We are more than ready, Operario said.

According to Palima, in preparation for the typhoon, the primary people on the ground are already on standby.

These include a seven-man Barangay Disaster Risk Reduction Management team in each of the city's 28 barangays and the additional 65 individuals, who will serve as augmentation forces for the existing rescue teams.

Personnel from the Traffic Management Office (TMO) will also monitor the situation of roads, he said.

"Our traffic enforcers are always ready for emergency deployment and possible rescue operations," TMO officer-in-charge Danny CaAaveral said.

Local Utility Office (LUO) head Ed Ronquillo also explained that they have already trimmed branches of big trees and fixed the bundling of electrical wires to minimize road accidents in case of strong winds due to the typhoon. In addition, the LUO also made sure that control panels for streetlights are checked, maintained and secured.

Apart from this, the Taguig City local government also issued a memorandum to all building owners and locators in the city, directing them to secure all billboards, advertising signages and heavy equipment like cranes, as these could pose dangers to the public with strong winds and heavy rains anticipated for the weather disturbance.

"We want to encourage everyone to please remain calm and to continue praying for everyone's safety. Rest assured that the city is doing its best to keep every TaguigeAo safe in times of calamities," said Taguig City Mayor Lani Cayetano.

"Sa panahon ng bagyo, walang maiiwang TaguigeAo," the lady mayor added. (PR)

Source: Philippine News Agency

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