The Philippines: Private Company to Dredge Rivers in Subic

The Aquino government, through the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), plans to hire a private company to dredge the rivers in Subic, Zambales in an attempt to alleviate the worsening flood situation a Palace Official said on Tuesday.

Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte assured during the regular press briefing in Malacanang that the DPWH is now addressing the concerns of the Subic communities that were hit by Super Typhoon Odette.

The monsoon rains, enhanced by Odette (international name Usagi), poured incessantly over the weekend, swelling rivers, causing flooding and triggered landslides in Subic and other areas in Zambales.

Calaclan River and other rivers that pass through Subic were heavily silted and overflowed, causing the floods.

Apparently, there is already a dredger from DPWH that is on standby in Olongapo. But it has not been operational since August of 2011 because there is a certain part, it’s called a converter module. It’s not working because of that and there are no available parts in the market. That’s why Secretary (Rogelio) Singson said that they are already considering contracting out the dredging to a private company,” Valte said.

Aside from dredging the rivers, Valte said the DPWH also plans to widen waterways to address the massive floodings.

And, normally, the widening is hampered by the presence of some structures along those rivers, or, at least, in this particular river, and the DPWH is dependent also on the local government to help in clearing the structures along the waterways,” she said.

Press Release, September 24, 2013

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