Wednesday, September 2, 2015
The Tarlac City Dike
THE TARLAC CITY DIKE
By Anton Antonio
September 2, 2015
I was roused into worries by a post by Prof. Segundo E. Romero on the Tarlac City dike. His post was accompanied by a photo of the breached portion near the McDonald’s area. I understand the concerns of Prof. Romero since the breached portion is near Barangay Cut-Cut where our esteemed educator spent his childhood. His beautiful narratives of his childhood could not hide his deep concern for the residents of Tarlac City in the event the dike collapses. This is not something our local government units should take lightly. Something has to be done SOON about this breach in the Tarlac City dike.
Wanting to understand the character of the Tarlac River especially the segment that passes through Tarlac City, I took the liberty of downloading a Google Earth image of this area. This becomes necessary in analyzing the river’s contour and to identify the pressure points. “Pressure points”, for our purposes are the relatively narrow areas along the Tarlac River. I’ve also taken the liberty of marking them “red”, these are: (1) north bank in Barangay Tibag in the vicinity of the Agana Bridge; (2) south bank along the Ninoy Aquino Boulevard bordering Barangays Carangian, Cut-Cut, Mabini, Poblacion and San Nicolas; and (3) north bank of Barangay San Isidro. Marked in “yellow” are the Agana and Ninoy Aquino Bridges. Also marked “yellow” is the estimated area where the Tarlac City dike was breached.
The Google Earth image that I got seems to be an old one since it shows a less swollen Tarlac River. The monsoon rains should show a larger river today. But this is a good image since it shows the tendency of the river... the direction it tends to go and where the Tarlac City dike remains vulnerable to pressure when the water level goes up. Obvious in the image are the “white” areas (showing sand) and “gray” areas (showing the water/stream). Based on these tendencies and directions of the Tarlac River the “pressure points” were identified.
Having identified the “pressure points” will be insignificant if engineering interventions are not put in place. These “pressure points” could be studied by our city and provincial engineers to recommend ideal and more suitable designs to counter the hydrologic pressure caused by the rushing stream of the Tarlac River especially after heavy downpours in the Capas and San Jose areas … upstream Tarlac River. Structural integrity should be the primary consideration when it comes to the Tarlac City dike.
Thoughts to promote positive action…
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REFERENCE: Google Earth map