LEGAZPI CITY: Owing to the upcoming weather disturbance, the Office of Civil Defense (OCD) in the Bicol region directed all disaster officials and responders across the region to be ready for contingency measures as the low-pressure area (LPA) is threatening to hit here on Sunday.

quinta2 - Bicol braces for tropical depression ‘Quinta’

Claudio Yucot, OCD regional director and Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council chairman in Bicol, alerted all disaster responders to beef up their preparedness, as the weather disturbance is expected to bring moderate to heavy rains and winds on Sunday that could trigger floods, mudflow, storm surges and landslides in low-lying and mountainous areas in Bicol.

Yucot placed Bicol under red alert status and advised the local disaster councils in six provinces of Bicol, namely Albay, Sorsogon, Camarines Sur, Camarines Norte, Catanduanes and Masbate, to closely monitor Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) advisories as the regional civil defense director placed response agencies on standby for possible deployment of assets and resources once the weather disturbance worsens.

Albay Gov. Al Francis Bichara immediately ordered the no-sailing policy for all types of seacraft involved in fishing in the entire province. The advisory was issued on Friday by the governor, following Pagasa updates about the weather disturbance.

Furthermore, Albay is threatened by lahar flow because of the heavy rains that could head to residential areas from the Maninila channel, one of the biggest river channels connecting the villages of Maninila, Tandarora and San Francisco in Guinobatan town.

The Bicol Region is usually hit by strong typhoons in the last quarter of the year. In October 2006, Typhoon “Milenyo” hit Bicol, killing hundreds. The following month in November 2006, Supertyphoon “Reming” hit the province, affecting thousands, following the deluge.

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