(File photo courtesy of NIA)

MANILA – Magat Dam in Luzon may resume spilling operations this August as a precaution against structural damage due to a possible rise in its water to the spilling or normal high level.

Ailene Abelardo, a hydrologist of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), said Saturday this is due to the expected high amount of rainfall by next month.

"If the forecast maximum rainfall is reached, and given the water allocation there for August, Magat's water will be at the normal high," Abelardo said in an interview.

To prevent this, she said Magat may opt to either resume its spilling operations or increase water allocation for irrigation and power generation activities.

Magat terminated its last spilling operations in December last year.

As of 6 a.m. Saturday, PAGASA reported Magat's water level at 171.02 meters, nearly 19 meters below its normal high level.

For August this year, however, PAGASA forecasts near-normal rainfall that could reach a maximum of 558 mm. in the watershed where Magat Dam is located.

Taking into consideration this forecast rainfall and Magat's anticipated total water allocation of 189 cubic meters per second for August, PAGASA estimated water in the dam to be at the normal high by the end of August.

According to PAGASA, tropical cyclones (TCs), low-pressure areas, and thunderstorms are among rain-bearing weather systems that could affect the country this August.

The weather bureau said two to three TCs may enter the country next month. (PNA)