More than 25 years after being devastated by a massive flash flood that claimed the lives of thousands of residents, the central Philippine city of Ormoc has revived its sense of safety thanks to the ongoing effects of Japan-funded flood-mitigation projects.

While memories of the November 1991 tragedy caused by Tropical Storm Thelma remain strong for the people of Ormoc, located nearly 1,000 km south of Manila on Leyte island, many said they have stopped worrying about the recurrence of killer floods after the Japan International Cooperation Agency completed ¥3.321 billion worth of projects there more than 15 years ago.

"It's a big help to the people of Ormoc," Sofronio Cayanong, 67, a local village councilor, told Kyodo News during a recent monitoring trip of the JICA-funded projects in the city.