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Monday, August 19, 2013

Paralyzed the capital of the Philippines-US, UK embassies closed due to flooding

The capital of the Philippines was almost paralyzed after the torrential rains that caused the rise in water level in many districts of this city of 12 million people.

Schools, public services and the Stock Exchange of Manila is now closed, and the city has been declared red alert.

"We're trying to save what we can. But it was so sudden, "said a father of four children at home which the water reached one meter. The roads are cut off and the drivers who tried to cross were forced to abandon their cars.

The poorest neighborhoods and slums, the residents sought refuge on the roofs of huts where the water enters through the windows, according to the images broadcast by television.

Torrential rains fell over the weekend in rural areas about 100 kilometers north of Manila on the island of Luzon, according to the Council of disaster management.

At least one person died and two are missing. According to the meteorological department, the intensity of rainfall is explained by the combination of monsoon and tropical storm tram, despite the fact that the latter was 500 km from the archipelago.

ASIDE from Philippine government offices, the embassies of the United States (US) and the United Kingdom (UK) were forced to close their offices amid the torrential rains and severe flooding brought by the Southwest Monsoon strengthened by Tropical Storm "Maring."

In separate advisories, the US and UK embassies said the move is important in ensuring the safety of both their employees as well as the public amid the rains and floods.

"All consular appointments scheduled today are cancelled," said the UK Embassy in its Twitter account.

The British embassy added that those looking for further information regarding their consular appointments may send an email at Cons.Manila@fco.gov.uk or call phone numbers (02) 8582200.

"The US Embassy will be closed Monday, August 19, 2013, due to severe flooding in and around Metro Manila," said the US Embassy in its Facebook account.

The American embassy said individuals with scheduled visa interviews may contact their visa information service at 02-982-5555 to reschedule their appointments.

Nevertheless, the two embassies assured their respective nationals of their readiness to assist them in case they are affected by the flooding and torrential rains.

"Advice for British nationals - If you have been affected by heavy rain or floods and require assistance, please call (02)8582200. Take care!" said the UK Embassy.

"For emergencies involving US citizens, please contact the American Citizen Services Unit of the US Embassy's Consular Section through the after-hours emergency telephone (632) 301-2000 or (632) 708-9703," said the US Embassy.

On Monday morning, Malacanang ordered the suspension of government work and classes in Metro Manila as well as in the provinces of Pangasinan, Benguet, Bataan, Zambales, Tarlac, Pampanga, Bulacan, Rizal, Laguna, Cavite, Batangas, and Occidental Mindoro. 
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