Even as the local government had yet to consult residents on the recommendation to evacuate their homes, another landslide hit barangay Campo 4 in Talisay City last Tuesday evening.
The Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) sent a team of geologists last Tuesday to assess the landslides along the road in the barangay. They recommended evacuation of the residents as rains, weak limestone soil and road construction made the area highly unstable.
“Following MGB's recommendation for evacuation, the office of the mayor and city planning and development office will meet with the identified homeowners tomorrow (Thursday) to discuss evacuation,” risk reduction committee officer and Councilor Semy Cabuenas told Cebu Daily News.
Camp 4 barangay captain Luciano “Jun” Cabingatan confirmed the scheduled meeting with the city officials and the five homeowner groups in the area.
After the site visit by personnel of the City Social Welfare Office yesterday morning, all of them agreed to transfer to a permanent evacuation site in barangay Biasong, Cabuenas said.
But one family backed out late yesterday afternoon, the councilor added.
“This is why the council has decide to meet with these homeowners together with the barangay captain to explain the situation to them,” he said.
Another landslide occurred last Tuesday evening and yesterday morning, as reported by Cabatingan.
“We immediately deployed our men. The clearing operations reached until morning. Our heavy equipment are concentrated there and as of 6 a.m. today (Wednesday) the road is partly cleared,” Ojeda said.
She reminded the public, especially residents near the site, to be watchful for recurring landslides and rock falls.
“Please tell the public through your paper to be cautious because every now and then there are falling debris” DPWH project manager Marilyn Ojeda said.
Not road project
Ojeda however downplayed the theory their road project contributed to ground instability and caused the landslides and rock falls.
“Perhaps we can't put QM Builders, the contractor of the DPWH to blame because it's a natural occurrence especially after the earthquake,” she explained.
Talisay City also sent a letter to the DPWH district engineer's office about the ongoing development in the mountain barangay of Talisay identified to be landslide-prone by state geologists.
Cabuenas said they leave it up to the DPWH to decide whether to close or not the portion of the highway.
But he noted residents, including those from the mountain barangay of Sinsin, Cebu City, opposed the idea of road closure.
“If we close that road, then they wil have to take the longer route which is the Naga-Oling road. The route is much farther and impractical for them,” he added. /Jessa J. Agua and Gabriel C. Bonjoc, Correspondents