MINES and Geosciences Bureau-10 Regional Director Rex S. Monsanto urged all local government units to read the Information materials on geologic hazards and review the geohazard maps, “Awareness and preparedness are the most effective prevention and mitigation measures against possible threats of geologic hazards such as landslides and flood”, he said.

The call by Director Monsanto comes as Northern Mindanao, is no longer immune to typhoons and other weather disturbances.  This was experienced during the low pressure area tropical depression “Agaton” event in January, this year, which affected parts of the region.

According to PAGASA, the first four weather disturbances (“Agaton”, “Basyang”, “Caloy”, “Domeng”) that entered the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) this year, affected or threatened parts of Mindanao.

Again, in June, heavy rains caused major landslides in Brgy. Buenavista, Bonifacio, Misamis Occidental and flooding and landslides in Barangay Magsaysay, Kibawe, Bukidnon.

Barangays Buenavista and Magsaysay have been assessed earlier by MGB-10 under the National Geohazard Mapping and Assessment Program and classified as Critical to Landslide Susceptibility.

Misamis Occidental Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Officer Gain Paul de Barras thanked MGB-10 for its earlier findings on the critical situation of the Diwat National High School in Brgy. Buenavista, Municipality of Bonifacio, which prompted authorities to relocate the school about two years ago.  Thus, when heavy rains triggered a major landslide in the area, the school was already abandoned.

RD Monsanto reminds LGUs that the Geohazard Assessment Program is not about funds and budget, but rather, on geohazard information and preparedness, that, if heeded by concerned authorities and other and other stakeholders, is about saving lives and properties.

Monsanto urged the public to see or visit Mines and Geosciences Bureau website at mgb10.com.

(Source: OroNewstar dated July 20-27,2014)

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