September 26, 2023

TUBA, Benguet – Kennon Road remains closed to the public while slope protection and other construction works are being implemented in various sections of the road.

The Cordillera Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council and the Kennon Road Joint Inter-Agency Task Group inspected anew the thoroughfare to look into the ongoing constructions and the developments being done along the historic road to ensure safety of the public.

CRDRRMC Chair and Office of the Civil Defense-Cordillera Director Albert Mogol and Department of Public Works and Highways-Cordillera Director Tiburcio Canlas led the inspection with the representatives from the Environmental Management Bureau, Mines and Geosciences, Philippine Information Agency, Tuba Municipal Police Station, and barangay officials along Kennon Road.

Canlas said the slope protection projects including the rock netting and the curtain netting for active and passive landslide areas along the mountain sides are now up to 90 percent. Works are ongoing in several sections which have been delayed due to the stoppage of work in the past months with the implementation of community quarantine due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The group also inspected the critical and landslide-prone areas with the technical persons of the MGB and EMB to look into the situation of the road and its safety with the rainy season on.

The DENR personnel conducted drone inspection and a walkthrough of the different sections of Kennon Road.

They also looked into a reported development being done along the portions of the mountain top which allegedly do not have permits issued from their offices.

Mogol said that based on their initial findings, Kennon Road will remain closed to the public until such time that the DPWH would complete the ongoing safety precaution works. However, it is open for residents along the road.

The CDRRMC and the Task Group would wait for the findings and assessment from the MGB and EMB before reopening the road.

He added that since tourism industry is not yet open, those allowed to travel during the community quarantine going in and out of Baguio City could use the Palisipis-Aspiras Highway (Marcos Highway) or Quirino Highway (Naguillian Road).

Kennon Road has been the subject of temporary closure and reopening due to damage caused by landslides and continuing rehabilitation works. – Redjie M. Cawis