7 dead after heavy rains in Zamboanga del Norte
DIPOLOG CITY, Philippines – Seven people were killed in flooding in Zamboanga del Norte, Police Chief Inspector Charisse Yabo, Zamboanga del Norte Police Provincial Office spokesperson, said on Wednesday, January 18.
One person is also reported missing.
Yabo identified those who died as the following:
From theMunicipality of Manukan
- Dominador C. Miraveles, 80
From the Municipality of Katipunan
- Jomar A. Rivera, 14
From the Municipality of Roxas
- Christine Y. Sumoda, 7
- Arann Zurc M. Bayron, 3
- Lean Denise M. Bayron, 5
- Pepe G. Randes, 57
- Jeffrey Gamtiao, 35
The missing person was identified as Jermie T. Palobio, 7, from the Municipality of Manukan.
Provincial police initially reported Tuesday of 3 deaths: two children drowned while an adult was found dead amid the flooding.
Yabo earlier said 3 children were reported missing on Monday afternoon – one from Jose Dalman town and two from nearby Roxas town.
"The missing child in Jose Dalman was recovered by rescuers last night while the dead bodies of two children – 3 and 5 years old – were found in Jose Dalman this morning," Yabo told Rappler.
Zamboanga del Norte residents were caught unaware of the threat of flash floods on Monday, as warnings came only through the Internet. Local media outlets were reportedly not able to help as news programs aired only in the morning and noontime.
The residents received text messages from local authorities, warning of continued heavy rains, Tuesday morning.
Heavy rains began at 9 am on Monday and by 4 pm, massive flooding and evacuation of communities were reported in Dapitan and Dipolog cities, and the municipalities of Katipunan, Roxas, Manukan, and Jose Dalman.
The hardest hit was Roxas town, where floodwaters reached the ceilings of one-level homes.
"In my memory, this is the worst flooding I know. The flood last December 4  was bad, but it's getting uglier," said 67-year-old lawyer Anecito Young, publisher of two local papers here.
Thousands were stranded in highways. Some students got home at night while ships were not allowed to sail due to big waves.
Flash floods were also reported in other parts of Mindanao and the Visayas, as a low pressure area (LPA) and the tail-end of a cold front triggered heavy rains. (READ: Nonstop rains also triggered floods in Cebu and Leyte) – Rappler.com