MAASIN CITY – Full restoration of landslide-hit road section in Sogod, Southern Leyte may take longer than expected as experts have still to find out the real cause of abnormal ground movements, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) field office here reported.
“Although we temporarily opened the Mahaplag-Sogod Road to motorists this week, we are still uncertain as to when we will fully restore the 250-meter road section affected by landslide in Barangay Pancho Villa in Sogod,” said DPWH Southern Leyte district engineering office chief Ma. Margarita Junia.
The official noted that unpredictable ground movements in the slope along the highway in Pancho Villa impedes the infrastructure agency’s repair works.
“Even if our maintenance workers managed to clear clay materials out of the road, we take a step back a bit due to the recurring swelling of the ground on the road, hence, delaying clearing activities,” Junia added.
Citing findings by the Philippine Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs), Junia said there is no fault line in the area that could trigger ground shaking.
“Experts from the central office already conducted a soil exploration on the slope to determine the status of the area there. We are still waiting for the result because that will be the basis for our restoration master plan,” Junia ended.
As of now, the road is passable for 45 days with the closure of Abuyog-Silago Road, a major alternative route connecting Visayas to Mindanao. The closure is due to the ongoing major rehabilitation works in Cadac-an Bridge along the alternate route.
On March 14, a major landslide occurred in Pancho Villa village damaging a part of the highway. The debris and signs of another landslide prompted the DPWH to temporarily close the road for safety of motorists. (PR/DPWH-So. Leyte/MMCJ/RSB)