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Caraga’s Christmas celebrations are dampened by heavy rain.

Residents in the Caraga Region have been compelled to leave their homes for safety due to floods as a result of the heavy rains that have been lashing most of the region since Saturday.

As rain warnings were issued on Sunday in the provinces of Surigao del Norte, Surigao del Sur, Agusan del Norte, Agusan del Sur, and Dinagat Islands, the local government units (LGUs) mobilized their respective disaster response teams.

The Department of Social Welfare and Development in the Caraga Region (DSWD-13) reported on Monday (Dec. 26) that as of Sunday, 1,554 families or 6,265 people had been directly impacted by flooding incidents in the Surigao del Norte, Agusan del Norte, and Dinagat Islands.

757 families, or 2,895 people, are currently residing in 30 evacuation facilities in the impacted regions, while the others are staying with friends and family.

The total number of partially and completely destroyed homes is still the subject of ongoing assessment and certification, according to the DSWD-13.

The organization noted that it has PHP52.88 million in reserve and stockpile money available for augmentation at the request of local government units in the area.

The DSWD regional warehouse in this location has a total of 9,762 family food packs that are also ready for augmentation.

The DSWD-13 instructed the impacted LGUs to make a request if they needed relief augmentation for the affected families.

Due to floods, enormous waves, and severe winds, around 98 families or 397 people from the coastal town of Masao were forced to flee to this city on Sunday.

The evacuees were temporarily housed at the Masao Elementary School for safety, according to a report released on Monday (Dec. 26) by the City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO).

The CSWDO reported that the city authority had previously given assistance items to all internally displaced people.

The CSWDO report also stated that large waves from the strong winds crashed against the shores of Barangay Masao, partially damaging at least 55 homes.

In six coastal barangays in the town of Carmen, Agusan del Norte, strong winds and waves also completely demolished 51 homes and partially damaged 77 others.

The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) announced on Monday morning that marine navigation has been temporarily halted in the province of Surigao del Norte.

According to a PCG notice, travel between Surigao City and the Dinagat Islands by vessels and watercraft with 150 tons or less is temporarily suspended because of gale-force winds brought on by the northeast monsoon, which also causes rough seas and large waves in the region.

Surigao del Norte was given an Orange Warning level as of Monday morning, while the other provinces in the area were given Yellow Warning levels.

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