City declared under state of calamity; council to conduct inquiry

By: 
PAUL RILLORTA
Posted: 03-Sep-2011 / 2 years 33 weeks ago

BAGUIO CITY – The city council last week declared the city in a state of calamity to expedite mitigating measures on the typhoon-triggered trash slide that killed six people in Asin Road last Aug. 27.

The body set an inquiry on the incident tomorrow (Sept. 5) inviting key personalities led by Mayor Mauricio Domogan and Protech Machinery Corp. vice president Luis Lu Jr. to its regular session.

The calamity status was declared upon the request of Mayor Domogan to enable the city to utilize the P93 million calamity fund to expedite the clearing of the trash mounds that covered Asin Road and to rehabilitate the collapsed wall that triggered the spill out of 15,000 tons of garbage.

It was however subject to the conditions that the proposed mitigating measures and expected expenses shall be submitted to the city council for approval.

City Environment and Parks management Officer (CEPMO) Cordelia Lacsamana earlier justified before the body the need for the remedial measures to be carried out immediately to avoid another catastrophe in the area.

“A danger of collapse from the remaining garbage from facility is imminent due to destabilization, covering the crack with tarpaulin and lightening the load by re-profiling should be done immediately,” she told the body.

She said CEPMO will also continuously monitor water intrusions in the dumpsite which they believed caused the retaining wall to give way including the control of odor and leacheates to avoid further contamination of water in the area.

Although the facility has been closed sometime 2009, it is being used as a controlled dump facility where regulated dumping has been allowed as part of the closure proceedings for the facility which also houses the Environmental Recycling System (ERS) machines the city purchased recently to help solve the garbage woes.

Vice mayor Daniel Farinas agreed that “addressing first the needs of the people affected by the trash slide and the damage it has caused is the main priority of the council.”

City social welfare and development office said the victims will also be given monetary assistance by the city.

Continuous clearing of the washed out garbage is being undertaken by the city’s garbage trucks while other volunteer trucks are helping in hauling out the remaining trash.

At least eight persons were reported dead and two were injured during the onslaught of Typhoon Mina in the city.

The fatalities of the trash slide were identified as Reveller Genesis Tacio Flores (13), Apolinario Tacio Flores (10), Jefonie Leon Maglanga Cael (18), Frando Tacio Flores (16), Noemi Cael (20) and their grandmother Antonia Tacio.

Other fatalities reported due to landslides which happened in other parts of the city are Floro Caguay Soliven (32) and Alex Dawen Magno (63).

At least 16 landslides, 8 soil erosions, 10 eroded rip-rap walls, 11 fallen trees, 7 floodings and a trash slide were reported. ***paul rillorta

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