Our folks would always tell us that experience is a good teacher. I beg to disagree in some instances when the subject is like weather, weather forecasting and disaster preparedness in our country. Either people don’t seem to learn or have short and protracted memory.
Last year many parts of the nation received a good pounding from a series of cyclones or storms which effects could have been preempted on the part of the government and the residents. So far, we were confronted with passive actions and hollowed ideas wanting of implementation.
Now that the predictable, sometimes disastrous typhoon and rainy season is here, the same experience is slowly but surely unfolding again. The people on the forefront of all this start talking of innovations and programs when the right time could have been just after the onslaught of the murderous disasters last year or perhaps decades ago.
Anyway, there is a plan of setting up a doppler radar system in the provinces of Catanduanes, Cagayan and Eastern Samar. The project will cost the national government about P1.6 billion which will be funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency.
The three-component project aims to start first the Virac, Catanduanes unit and the last two are estimated to follow with all the facilities projected to be operational by September 2012,
Once completed the modernized system, comparable to the state-of-the-art technology now used in western countries, would engage the Philippine atmospheric geophysical and astronomical services or PAGASA to project accurate forecast. For Catanduanes folks, a warning will give a two-hour window of opportunity to prepare for the impending calamity.
An eight-story edifice will host the four components of the doppler which include meteorological data, satellite communications, radar and data display systems.