Flooding caused heavy traffic along NLEX, motorists turn to social media
For many motorists, the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) toll road is the only gateway to the northern provinces from Manila. Though there are quite a few national roads that lead to Northern Luzon, NLEX is still by far the most convenient road to take, until recently.
Heavy rains brought about by typhoons Egay and Falcon have caused rivers to overflow and many towns in Bulacan and Pampanga were submerged in floodwaters. Unfortunately, some portions along NLEX also became flooded, more specifically in the area near Tulaoc Bridge in San Simon, Pampanga, causing a very long queue of motorists as drivers squeeze in what little space is available to try to avoid the floodwaters.
As it is quite the norm these days, motorists immediately turn to social media to voice out their frustration, suggestions, and even warnings to their friends to not drive going north (or back to Manila) unless it is absolutely necessary.
One motorist shared that they waited 12 hours just to cross the San Simon, Pampanga portion of NLEX, going to Bocaue, Bulacan – which is just a mere 30-kilometer drive – all with kids onboard. She was just thankful that there was a 24-hour fast food restaurant where they waited off the traffic jam.
Another motorist, shared that they were still on the road at 2 in the morning because of the traffic jam. Presumably, they were already on the road when the sun was still up.
One of the commenters, suggested that a little bit of planning and foresight could’ve prevented this fiasco from happening, especially since the monsoon season stretches for a couple of months every year and is not something that only comes once in a blue moon.
Corrective measures undertaken
The management of NLEX has already deployed a team to implement corrective actions to address the flooding at the Tulaoc area in San Simon, Pampanga caused by the Pampanga River overflow.
According to NLEX, “Since yesterday, our operations team has continued to conduct regular inspection and installed sandbags to reduce flooding in the area. They have been siphoning off water from the carriageway to help drain floodwater faster. Our patrol teams are on site to manage traffic situation to ensure efficient and safe traffic flow on the expressway.”
During these times of “bed weather”, it is still best to just stay at home or postpone your northern trip some other time to avoid the hassle. It is during these times that man and machine simply can’t win over Mother Nature, and we just have to wait for more favorable weather before embarking on a long drive.