BAGAC, Bataan – This mountain town adjacent to the West Philippines Sea became the first town in Bataan and in Region 3 to have a tsunami early warning system, municipal administrator Nicanor Ancheta announced Tuesday.
He said that the set of tsunami alert equipment was installed in Saysain, one of six coastal villages out of the town’s 16 barangays.
The administrator said Mayor Rommel del Rosario was very thankful to the Department of Science and Technology for choosing Bagac as one of the areas in the Philippines to have such an important device.
“The warning system monitors the movement of the sea and detects the sudden rise and fall of the sea level. It will guide those involved in disaster and rescue operations to carry out evacuation plans, if necessary, with plenty of time to save lives,” Ancheta said. He said the tsunami alert system can monitor almost the entire West Philippines Sea.
The administrator said the mayor considered the installation of the equipment in Saysain as a good choice, taking into account that the village was hit by strong tsunami sometime in 1969.
He said there was no reported loss of lives because the residents were able to go to high and safer ground but the damage to property was heartening. “The village was flattened, houses and other infrastructures all destroyed,” Ancheta said.
He said the villagers were still fortunate that time for there was no recorded casualty but another tsunami might prove more disastrous. “The tsunami alert system will be a big help because it will be monitoring the movement of the sea closely so that early and immediate action can be implemented,” Ancheta said.
Bagac which is famous for its beautiful sandy beaches was also the first in Bataan to have an Automated Weather Station that provides weather forecasts.