- Pacific Island Times Staff
Gov. Calvo declares emergency, activates National Guard
Following a meeting with island Mayors, Guam Homeland Security/Office of Civil Defense, Joint Region Marianas Defense Coordinating Officer, and Guam National Guard, Governor Eddie Baza Calvo declared a State of Emergency for Guam and is activating the Guam Army National Guard. Constant heavy rainfall throughout the island caused severe flooding and mudslides in parts of Guam. Homes are flooded and and riverbanks are overflowing. Homeland Security/Civil Defense, and Department of Public Works, along with mayors and others are monitoring the Umatac Bridge where the river has risen. Public Works has been working with mayors. The National Guard has heavy equipment and other assets to mitigate flooding. There will be periods of clear skies but until the monsoon has moved away, it will be followed by additional showers – which come at a time when the ground is already saturated. More rain is expected tonight and tomorrow. Reported Disrupted Roadways:
GHS/OCD EOC received the following reports of disrupted roadways. Proceed with extreme caution or seek alternate routes when possible, until a complete assessment is done: - East Gayinero Street, Yigo – Reported flooding but passable - Barcines area, Merizo – Reported flooding but passable - Rt. 1, by Polaris Point – Reported flooding but passable - Umatac Bridge – Reported heavy surge of water, the bridge is passable but proceed with caution - Rt. 1, Tumon area – Reported flooding but passable - Pulantat, Yona – Reported flooding but passable - San Antonio Avenue, Dededo – Reported flooding Although areas were listed as passable, it is important to remember the flash flood warning and that a surge of water can happen in an instant. If possible, stay off flooded roadways as emergency responders and crews continue to make assessments and clear debris. If travel is necessary, practice caution especially nearing intersections, allowing enough braking distance between cars. Flash Flood Warning
A flash flood warning remains in effect for Guam, Rota, Tinian, and Saipan. Heavy rain will continue over the islands, with expected rainfall of 4 to 8 inches, with locally heavier amounts. Excessive runoff from heavy rainfall will cause flooding of small creeks and streams, urban areas, highways, streets, and underpasses as well as other drainage areas and low lying spots. Those living in areas prone to flooding should be prepared to take action and move to higher ground if necessary. Also, residents should keep the following flood safety tips in mind: o Turn around, don’t drown. Seek alternate routes if you encounter a flooded roadway. o Avoid walking or driving through flood waters. o Just 6 inches of moving water can knock you down, and 2 feet of water can sweep your vehicle away. o If there is a chance of flash flooding, move immediately to higher ground. o If floodwaters rise around your car but the water is not moving, abandon the car and move to higher ground. If the water is moving, do not leave the car. o Avoid camping, parking, or hiking along streams, rivers, and creeks during heavy rainfall. These areas can flood quickly and with little warning. Visit https://www.ready.gov/floods to learn more. The Department of Public Works has been working with village Mayors since early last week to clear drainage areas prone to flooding but the continued rain is inundating the roadways. For more information or to report any manholes uncovered or flooded, impassable roadways, contact the Joint Information Center at (671) 478-0208/09/10.
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