Typhoon deaths in CV top 100

·4 min read

BOHOL Gov. Arthur Yap had reported that as of 5 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 19, 2021 at least 72 people died in the devastation wrought by Typhoon Odette (international name: Rai) in more than half of the towns that managed to contact the governor, bringing the death toll in the strongest typhoon to batter the country this year to over 140.

The town of Ubay had the most number of fatalities with 12, followed by the towns of San Miguel and Loon with six each.

The City of Tagbilaran, and towns of Dauis and Balilihan reported no casualties. The provincial government said the reported deaths were submitted by the local government units and were verified by the local police.

Yap said over 10 other people were missing and 13 injured, and suggested the fatalities may still considerably increase, with only 42 out of 48 mayors able to report back to him due to downed communications. Officials were trying to confirm a sizable number of deaths caused by landslides and extensive flooding elsewhere.

The deaths in Bohol raised the toll to at least 144 in Central Visayas as Negros Oriental reported a partial list of 42 deaths and Cebu’s fatalities rose to 30 from the previous 28—Cebu City, 15; Lapu-Lapu City, 8; Mandaue City, seven.

State of Calamity

The City Council of Mandaue has placed the entire city under a state of calamity, three days after the onslaught of Typhoon Odette in Cebu.

Lawyer John Eddu Ibañez, executive secretary of Mayor Jonas Cortes, said the City Council already issued Resolution No. 15-940-2021 declaring the city under the state of calamity during their special session on Sunday, Dec. 19. He said they answered the call or recommendation of the mayor through the Local Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council.

In Bohol, Yap placed the province under a state of calamity on Friday due to the wreckage of the weather disturbance.

Many lost their homes and were displaced due to the typhoon.

In statements posted on Facebook, Yap ordered mayors in his province of more than 1.2 million people to invoke their emergency powers to secure food packs for large numbers of people along with drinking water, which he said was an urgent problem since water stations were down during power outage.

Aerial survey

After joining a military aerial survey of typhoon-ravaged towns, Yap said “it is very clear that the damage sustained by Bohol is great and all-encompassing.”

He said the initial inspection did not cover four towns, where the typhoon blew in as it rampaged on Thursday and Friday through central island provinces. The government said about 780,000 people were affected, including more than 300,000 residents who had to evacuate their homes.

At least 39 other typhoon deaths were reported by the disaster-response agency and the national police. Officials on Dinagat Islands, one of the southeastern provinces first pounded by the typhoon, separately reported 10 deaths just from a few towns, bringing the overall fatalities so far to 112.

President Rodrigo Duterte flew to the region Saturday and promised P2 billion in new aid.

Yap conducted another aerial survey Sunday in Ubay, Talibon, Bien Unido and Carlos P. Garcia, which were the landfall points of Odette.

The governor said the local government officials of Inabanga, Loboc, Batuan and Carlos P. Garcia have already asked for food assistance.

Yap said the provincial government and the Department of Social Welfare and Development will immediately send food packs, especially water to these municipalities.

At its strongest, the typhoon packed sustained winds of 195 kilometers per hour (kph) and gusts of up to 270 kph, one of the most powerful in recent years to hit the disaster-prone archipelago, which lies between the Pacific Ocean and the South China Sea.

Floodwaters rose rapidly in Bohol’s riverside town of Loboc, where residents were trapped on their roofs and trees. They were rescued by the coast guard the following day. On Dinagat Islands, an official said the roofs of nearly all the houses, including emergency shelters, were either damaged or blown away.

At least 227 cities and towns lost electricity, which has since been restored in only 21 areas, officials said, adding three regional airports were damaged, including two that remain closed.

The deaths and widespread damage left by the typhoon ahead of Christmas in the largely Roman Catholic nation brought back memories of the catastrophe inflicted by another typhoon, Yolanda (international name: Haiyan), one of the most powerful on record. It hit many of the central provinces that were pummeled last week, leaving more than 6,300 people dead in November 2013.

About 20 storms and typhoons batter the Philippines each year. The archipelago is located in the seismically active Pacific “Ring of Fire” region, making it one of the world’s most disaster-prone countries. (AP, TPM / SunStar Philippines with MKG, IRT)

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