As the cities of Iligan and Cagayan De Oro continue to reel from the huge swath of destruction of lives and property left behind by super typhoon “Sendong,” the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) introduced a locally-developed scientific flood warning system that offers a more responsive disaster preparedness mechanism for the country.
In an interagency meeting held recently, DOST Secretary Mario Montejo presented the National Flood Monitoring, Forecasting, and Mitigation Program-- an integrated, comprehensive system that responds to the urgent need for a reliable flood warning system covering the country’s major river systems and watersheds.
“The National Flood Monitoring Program is government’s commitment toward a more effective and efficient disaster mitigation and monitoring system. Too many lives have already been lost, and it is high time for science to step up to the plate and save lives this time around,” Montejo said.
The project received support from other meeting participants, including Department of Social Welfare and Development Secretary Ma. Corazon “Dinky” Soliman, Department of Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, including the undersecretaries from the interior and local government and environment departments. Leading the meeting was Department of Public Works and Highways Secretary Rogelio Singson.
The flood management program, according to Montejo, has four main components: the DREAM or the Disaster Risk Exposure, Assessment, and Mitigation; FLOODNET; Sensors Development and Weather Media.
These measures were launched after President Benigno Aquino III issued strict directives to concerned government agencies to step up national efforts toward greater and more intensive disaster risk reduction and management procedures in the wake of Typhoon “Sendong.”
“Disaster preparedness will entail a team effort, so that together we will be able to achieve goals and end-results mutually beneficial for all,” Montejo added.
For his part, Singson stressed the vital role of communication so the public will understand the usage and effectiveness of these devices, which are about ready to roll out. (S&T Media Service)