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New rain gauges to track water volume in Iloilo

/ 04:17 AM January 22, 2012

MANILA, Philippines—Compelled by the devastating floods triggered by typhoons and storms visiting the country each year, the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), together with Smart Communications Inc., has completed the installation of five automatic rain gauges in the province of Iloilo.

The new installations in the municipalities of Alimodian, Cabatuan, Maasin, Pavia and Jaro are envisioned to complement the other rain gauges put up by the DOST across Region VI (Western Visayas).

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Smart has also pledged to help fund the installation of automatic water level sensors that will alert riverside communities once critical levels are reached, according to DOST VI Regional Director Rowen Gelonga.

Alimodian Mayor Juanito Alipao thanked Smart during the turnover ceremony held recently. “The rain gauge is a guide for us, and it will help us keep our communities alert to calamities brought about by heavy rains and typhoons,” he said.

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Iloilo, a calamity-prone province, was among the worst hit by Typhoon “Frank” in 2008. The typhoon caused mudslides and flooding in Iloilo City and adjoining municipalities, displacing thousands of families.

“Before the year 2000, the Philippines was visited by powerful typhoons every three to five years. Now, we experience devastating [weather disturbances] every year,” Gelonga said, citing Tropical Storm “Sendong” that left more than 1,000 people dead and missing in northern Mindanao last month.

“And most of the lives lost during these typhoons are not because of strong winds or storm surges but flooding,” he said.

TOPICS: Department of Science and Technology (DoST), DOST VI Regional Director Rowen Gelonga, Floods, Smart Communications Inc., storms, typhoons
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