Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Ondoy (Ketsana) Deja Vu. Southwest Monsoon Woes

V. Mapa LRT Station in Manila

Aurora Boulevard in Manila
view from my bedroom window in Pasig City
continuous rain for the past 3 days;  morning looks like the sun is about to go down.  
view on a clear day
I now have a fair understanding of how 40 days and 40 nights of continuous rain could destroy the entire world!  As of this writing (2:30 in the afternoon of 7 August 2012), there is no storm, typhoon, cyclone, low pressure area, nor dangerous weather system afflicting the Philippines, just your usual wet monsoon (i.e., "hanging habagat" in the vernacular).   But Oh My God!  This monsoon is by no means your ordinary wet monsoon.  It's a FREAK southwest monsoon.  It's been continuously raining for the past 3 days and flash floods have already wreaking havoc in central and southern regions of Luzon including the National Capital region, Metro Manila.  It's freakishly scary!

Rivers have overflowed and reservoirs have gone beyond critical levels.  Metro Manila is in Red Alert by the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA).  This means that the measured rainfall has reached more than 30 mm. per hour.  A lot of people (i.e., by the thousands) have been evacuated already especially from areas where floods have reached (could you imagine?) the height of more than 6 feet!

Below is a picture I took from the TV just this noon.  The local coverage has shown a part of Metro Manila where the water has reached the second floors of houses already.  The man is standing on the roof of hist first floor!  It looks like Typhoon Ketsana (i.e., Ondoy in the local vernacular) all over again.

Thankfully, our city (i.e., Pasig City) has learned something from Ketsana.   A few months after that "freak" typhoon Ketsana in 2009, the city had fixed the drainage system and floodways.  Now, with this "freak" monsoon, unlike in the past, there is no flood in the surrounding area (at least here in Palmdale Heights).  Other parts of Metro Manila and nearby provinces however, aren't so lucky!  In fact most nearby provinces are already in a "state of calamity".

Lesson learned!  Floods from 2009 Typhoon Ketsana.
Here is a video coverage of the latest conditions of some of the flooded areas in Metro Manila (particularly in Quezon City) by the local news organization, GMA 7.

Now, we need your prayers and help.  If you can, please extend a helping hand.  There are a lot of legitimate organizations carrying out relief operations.  One such organization is the Kapuso Foundation.  Learn more about the foundation and their efforts in helping out the victims of this "freak" monsoon.  Below is the link to their web site.  Many thanks.

Postscript:  there are 2 types of monsoon.  (1) Wet monsoon is also known as the Southwest monsoon.  which occurs from May to September.  The wind coming from Southwest brings forth rains.  (2) Dry monsoon is also known as the Northeast monsoon.  Winds come from the Northeast and usually occurs between October and April.

Learn more about the cause and effect of typhoons and floods in my previous blogpost.  Click the link below to read the article.

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