San Carlos to seek help from WV geologists on cracks 

Cracks are visible on the part of the retaining wall of Palampas river at Purok Tindalo, Barangay 1, San Carlos City, Negros Occidental prompting a preemptive evacuation of 10 households on May 12. (Photo courtesy of CDRRMO)

By Glazyl Y. Masculino

BACOLOD City – The City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO) in San Carlos, Negros Occidental is eyeing to get help from regional geologists to take a deeper look into the cause of cracks near Palampas river at Purok Tindalo, Barangay 1.

CDRRM officer Joe Alingasa Jr. said 10 households were preemptively evacuated on May 12 after a portion of the retaining wall along Palampas river showed early signs of possible collapse due to scouring.

Personnel from the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), the City Engineering Department, and the CDRRMO Community Risk Assessment Team conducted an initial investigation on the cause of the visible cracks of the retaining wall and ground fissures.

Alingasa said they are conducting ocular inspections every day to check the movement of cracks since it’s been moving rapidly in the past seven days.

“It has to be further investigated with the help of the DPWH,” Alingasa said, adding that they have yet to see the extent of damage of the cracks.

Alingasa said the water encroached into the area where houses are situated.

“Na ab-ab sa dalum na part, wala sila kakita,” he added.

Alingasa said there was an existing riprap in the area until it was later enhanced by the DPWH into a retaining wall to prevent river water from going into the houses.

However, it added weight on the existing riprap, probably causing it to move until it became hollow underneath, he added.

Alingasa said the DPWH, geologists, and the City Engineering Office should look into mitigating measures to prevent erosion.

He said there is a need to ensure the structural integrity of the retaining wall before the residents could repair or reconstruct their houses.

He also said there should be geotechnical interventions that will ensure the stability of the ground.

He said that it is too dangerous for residents to stay at their homes, considering there’s thunderstorm advisories that could worsen the situation.

As of May 16, he said they have not recorded any movement. “Hopefully, na reach niya na ang bottom,” Alingasa said.

He, however, noted that it is not yet advisable for the affected families to go back since a thorough investigation and proper assessment are needed.

Alingasa said the affected families are now temporarily staying at the barangay hall and were provided with food packs.