Over the weekend, an exceptionally strong southwest monsoon struck most parts of Luzon with relentless rain and strong winds. It left a few cities flooded; Marikina in particular was heavily damaged and submerged with thousands of families in need of evacuation. Thanks to social media, the need for help was easily broadcasted and people responded. Here’s a rundown of what happened a mere few days ago.
A city almost submerged in flood water
— Alvin Jason Andrada (@iameeyjeey) August 11, 2018
— CNN Philippines (@cnnphilippines) August 11, 2018
We all saw the photos and videos that circulated around social media during the peak of the monsoon rains. It was shocking to say the least. The water level in Marikina rose up to more than 20 meters, a little more and it might have surpassed Typhoon Ondoy’s water level in 2009 which was at 23 meters. What’s more shocking is that this wasn’t even a typhoon! It was a monsoon, and yet it had the power to submerge roads, and even a whole floor of the carpark in SM Marikina.
The Boulevard of Trash
#Habagat2018 | Nagtulong-tulong ang mga estudyante ng San Beda University-Rizal at ilang empleyado ng Department of Public Works and Highways sa paglilinis ng mga nakatambak na basura sa sea wall ng Manila Bay.
📷: Matthew Doming
Posted by News5 on Saturday, August 11, 2018
After Boracay, the next shore should be closed is Manila Bay. pic.twitter.com/67A8VwwhA1
— Kobe Atangan (@wkmatangan10) August 12, 2018
Wind, rain, and waves buffeted Roxas Boulevard last Saturday, and this particular onslaught by nature brought heaps of trash along with it. This is what we get from throwing trash into the ocean. This is Manila Bay’s way of saying she’s had enough of our trash and she’s sending it back to us. If this isn’t a wake-up call, I don’t know what is.
6:09AM | AUGUST 12, 2018
Location: Marcos Highway Vermont Royale part. Still not passable
While Filipinos are used to traffic, it doesn’t mean we enjoy it. In fact, if there was an option to solve it, say sacrifice some government officials to a volcano (kidding), we would easily make that choice. Adding rain to the equation during rush hour is a nightmare. Some Filipinos who would ply Marcos Highway daily found themselves stuck in traffic for almost 8 hours due to impassable lanes.
Monsoons and typhoons are tests for everyone, especially the government. Will their projects be sturdy enough? Will drainage systems withstand heavy rainfall? If not, what good are our taxes for then?
People stranded on their roof while the rain poured
PLEASE SEND US SOME HELP NASA BUBONG KAMI NGAYON ALMOST 20 PEOPLE KAMI. PLEASE HELP USSSS
128 CAMIA ST MINAHAN INTERIOR MALANDAY MARIKINA
PLEASSSEEREE HELP USSSS
— joy✨ (@_jonuts) August 11, 2018
URGENT: Marikina City needs rescue boats, six-by-six trucks, and amphibian vehicles. Marikina River now at a critical 19.2 meters less than 2 meters from Ondoy level. 10,000 residents have been evacuated, but some families are now trapped in Balubad and Tumana. PLEASE RETWEET
— Creatives of Manila (@CreativesOfMNL) August 11, 2018
In the age of social media, getting word out into the world is much easier. People who were stranded started tweeting their locations, and other people were quick to respond. There was even a poster going around for a plea for more boats to use as rescue vehicles. Bayanihan is not dead, it just jumped to a different platform.
The evacuation center
LOOK: Residents from Malanday, Marikina enjoy their privacy with the help of modular tents at the city’s evacuation center.
— Philstar.com (@PhilstarNews) August 12, 2018
Gone are the days where evacuation centers are just large covered areas where hundreds of people put down their blankets to mark their spaces. Photos of the evacuation center at a gym in Marikina were released and we’re all impressed, to say the least. Residents were given privacy in their own tents large enough so a family of 4 can easily sleep. Kudos to Marikina LGU! Sana all.
When Mother Nature is in a rage, everybody flees, even insects. These cockroaches had their own evacuation center! But seriously, nobody thought of busting out a can of bug spray? They’re right where we want them! Too cruel?
Still more trash
— ABS-CBN News (@ABSCBNNews) August 13, 2018
This typhoon just showed us how undisciplined we are as a nation. The blame shouldn’t always be pointed towards the government; we as citizens also are a part of the problem. Maybe it’s time to heed the strong call into becoming an eco-friendly country?
And the “Filipino resilience”
THE FILIPINO SPIRIT: A man submerged in floodwater in Marikina City manages to flash a smile despite his difficult situation. Filipinos are known for their resiliency especially since the country is hit by more than 20 typhoons every year. pic.twitter.com/8232Gj9ANH
— The Philippine Star (@PhilippineStar) August 11, 2018
Filipinos have always been lauded for bravely smiling amidst tragedies, but don’t mistake this to mean that we’re enjoying losing our houses and everything we have. Is it Filipino resilience? Or are we just forced to cope with the bad infrastructure and everything else the government is content to leave us with? Filipinos are strong but we sure as heck don’t deserve all this. We deserve better!
Filipino resilience is bullshit. We need better drainage. We need better transpo. We need better disaster response.
sorry triggeredt gusto ko na umuwi malamok na dito
— Tetay Zombie (@tetayzombie) August 11, 2018
We need to stop romanticizing suffering as the “Filipino branding of resilience”. Yes, we should be strong in times of adversity but we also have to be critical and start demanding action to solve our drainage systems and disaster response systems. https://t.co/eR7SafjSgR
— dan (@impedanceee) August 11, 2018
With all that in mind..
Let’s pray that Sen. Angara and all other elected officials will make full use of their authority & resources to make better planned urban spaces and disaster-prepared communities 🙏🇵🇭 https://t.co/JLvaJOdXUy
— ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) (@leonidesfjr) August 11, 2018
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