Saturday 23 September 2017

Landslide kills two in Cebu City. The Philippines.

Two people have been killed and several more have been evacuated after a landslide hit the community of Sitio Lower Ponce in the Capitol Site area of Cebu City, on the Philippine island of the same name. The dead have been named as Elpedio Geraga, 64, and Juvelyn Sanipa, 31. The incident happened at about 8.15 pm on Thursday 21 September 2017, after about five hours of continuous heavy rain. Landslides are a common problem after severe weather events, as excess pore water pressure can overcome cohesion in soil and sediments, allowing them to flow like liquids.Approximately 90% of all landslides are caused by heavy rainfall. Cebu has a wet and dry tropical climate, with a long rainy season that lasts from May to January. 

 Rescue workers at the site of the 21 September 2017 Cebu landslide. Junjie Mendoza/Cebu Daily News.

Cebu has a tropical climate with distinct wet and dry seasons. The wet season lasts from June to October and brings with it frequent heavy rains and associated problems. The community of Sitio Lower Ponce is an informal settlement (i.e. built without formal permission or adherence to planning rules by members of a poor community) on a 45 degree slope above a road. This site is home to several hundred people, and is prone not just to landslides, but also to floods and fires.

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