City, ZCWD set emergency steps in case El Nino effect worsens PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 22 March 2016 11:31

By SHEILA COVARRUBIAS

The City Government has approved the measures proposed by the Zamboanga City Water District aimed to mitigate the wide-reaching effects of the continuing dry spell that is crippling the city and the residents.

The measures include enjoining large companies with water tankers to help the city and the ZCWD in providing potable water to hard-hit areas in the city and the possibility of storing backwash water in the city’s swimming pools for firefighting purposes during this Fire Prevention Month and cleaning of public areas to maintain a high level of sanitation.

ZCWD General Manager Leonardo Rey Vasquez, in a letter to Mayor Beng Climaco through City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Officer Dr. Elmeir Apolinario, said the “continued recession of water levels at the reservoirs compounded by the continued dry spell and the limited number of water tankers hamper ZCWD’s desire to alleviate the plight of Zamboangueños during this crisis which might be prolonged.”

Vasquez made the proposal as the ZCWD began the revised water rationing scheme that will provide water to the city’s 3 key areas with longer hours of water service but on an every-other day basis.

According to Vasquez, the water firm’s current fleet of water tankers is unable to meet the growing demands of residents for service, potable water during this crisis with water rationing in effect.

He said the procurement of additional 6 water tankers by the ZCWD are in different stages of procurement process and will not be forthcoming to address the urgency of the situation. Thus, the need for the implementation of emergency actions in case the water crisis will worsen further.

The 2016 El Niño is the worst to have ever hit the city and the country.

As this developed, Dr. Apolinario, who met with Vasquez and other ZCWD officials Monday morning, on instructions of Mayor Climaco, said the City Government is supporting the water firm in all its requests in a bid to help alleviate the plight of the people amid the worsening dry spell.

“We are taking into consideration all the requests because we have to address the water crisis that the city is experiencing,” Apolinario added. —  Sheila Covarrubias