The municipality of Brooke’s Point lost an estimated P65.1 million in agriculture due to the floods brought by heavy rains last week, while infrastructure damages went up to P37. 806 million, the Municipal Information Office (MIO) said Tuesday.
In his report released on Tuesday morning, municipal agriculturist Renato Bacosa said the most affected was the high-value crops in Brgy. Imulnod with an estimated loss of P30.117 million, followed by rice fields with P26.739 million.
“Imulnod was one of the hardest hit barangays where a hanging bridge collapsed to flood, leaving residents unable to bring their products to market,” Bacosa said.
Other loses recorded were P3.726 million in coconut plantation, P2.073 million in livestock and poultry, P1.335 million in corn, and P1.031 million in fish catch and fishpond products.
The town’s engineering office also released an update on the infrastructure damages that went up from P28.556 million last week to P37. 806 million today, with mostly roads and bridges that were either partially damaged or totally destroyed.
Thousands of families were also evacuated with some losing their homes to the flood. A Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO) report stated that 87 houses were totally destroyed while 43 were partially damaged.
The heavy rains that lasted for around four days were brought by low-pressure area that affected the southern part of Palawan, with Brooke’s Point being hit the most with 16 of its 18 barangays inundated.
The extent of the damage also pushed the local government unit (LGU) to extend the month-long state of calamity to six months.
Mayor Cesareo Benedito Jr. said after an assessment during their meeting on Tuesday, the Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (MDRRMC) decided to extend the state of calamity, which was also concurred with by the Sangguniang Bayan through a resolution later in the day.
“We need to extend the period of calamity because of the severe impact of the floods,” he said.
The MDRRMO was again on high alert for possible rise of water level in rivers yesterday, especially in Barangay Imulnod where the water level rose yesterday because of another downpour.
“Residents particularly students who were on their way home got scared of crossing the river so we sent a truck to fetch them,” MDRRMO officer-in-charge Joey Herredero said in a telephone interview.
He said a detour bridge was constructed in Cabinbin where a hanging bridge was destroyed so residents can now cross the river.
“A section of the detour collapsed yesterday because the water level rose and is now being repaired,” he said.
As of now, MDRRMO personnel are still repacking relief goods for distribution in different barangays.
Herredero also said majority of the evacuees have already returned home except in Barangay Barong-barong where there are still 38 families in the evacuation center because their houses were damaged by the flood. (with reports from Marialen Galicia-Archie)