The agriculture department has advised farmers and fishermen to secure their mature crops and mobilize post-harvest equipment to avoid possible damage due to tropical depression “Pepito” that is still within the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR).
Department of Agriculture (DA) ASec. Noel Reyes said in a virtual presser on Tuesday that the department already activated its regional operation centers (ROCs) and coordinated with local government units (LGUs) to prepare for an emergency.
“Maghanda na yong mga magsasaka natin na kung may natitira pa kayong aanihin, meron kaming advisory sa farmers at fisherfolk na kung may natitira pa kayong aanihin, anihin niyo na, ipatuyo, secure seed reserves,” he said.
Tropical depression Pepito was last located at some 410 kilometers east of Virac, Catanduanes, moving west-northwestward direction at 20 kilometers per hour (kph). The weather system has maximum winds of 55kph near the center and gustiness up to 70 kph.
Farmers and fisherfolk are advised to harvest mature crops and mobilize their post-harvest equipment and facilities. DA also suggested for farmers to secure seed reserves, planting materials, and other farm inputs in safe and proper storage areas.
To avoid the damages, farmers must also relocate farm machinery, equipment, and other farm tools to higher ground; secure sufficient feeds and water for relocated animals; and clear drainage in irrigation and rice paddies from obstruction to prevent flooding.
DA also said fisherfolk to secure fishing vessels in higher ground and dismiss sea travel as potentially rough conditions prevail over affected seaboards.
“Kasama na rin ang ating farm animals ay i-secure, ‘yong drainage pakitingin din para maiwasan ang pagbaha. Sa mga mangingisda, mag-early harvest kung tatamaan kayo, although mahina lang ang bagyo, at the same time, be cautious,” he said.