Coastal evacuation marred by some refusal to leave homes

EVEN if Cebu was spared casualties from typhoon Ompong, local disaster offices met problems with the evacuation of families living in coastal areas.

Provincial Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO) information officer Jules Regner lamented that some residents of coastal areas refused to leave their homes.

“They were very stubborn so the military and the police were called,” Regner said in Cebuano. “Some of them listened, but there were others who didn’t. But we emphasized, especially with the mayors, that what we are doing is just for their benefit.”

Regner said that law enforcers were sent to coastal areas around 10 p.m. last Friday to aid the residents in the evacuation. However, it was only around 1 a.m. the next day that some families left their homes upon seeing the large waves.

Evacuated families

According to the PDRRMO record, 148 families were evacuated to the sports centers or gyms of their respective barangays.

A lot of the families came from the City of Naga: 28 were evacuated from Barangay South Poblacion, 18 in North Poblacion, 15 in Colon and seven in Tuyan.

Eleven families were evacuated in Mandaue City, all from Barangay Tabok. In Lapu-Lapu City, 15 families were evacuated from Barangay Buaya and four in Barangay Suba Basbas. There were also 50 families evacuated in Talisay City from Barangays Dumlog, Poblacion and Cansojong.

As of yesterday afternoon, the families went back to their homes.

Luzon wasn’t as lucky as Cebu.

Six persons, including a young girl found floating in the Marikina River, were confirmed dead as typhoon Ompong (international name Mangkhut) wreaked havoc yesterday.

The Office of Civil Defense-Cordillera said two small-scale miners were killed after rescuing a family who were trapped in a landslide in Itogon, Benguet. The mother of the family who were rescued did not survive.

Two other persons were killed in a landslide in Barangay Bakakeng, Baguio City.

Officials, though, declined to name the fatalities as their identities are being confirmed.

No problem

In Cebu City, there were no casualties or reports of landslides or flooding.

Cebu City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office chief Nagiel Bañacia said that except for a few complaints on power interruptions caused by typhoon Ompong, there were no reports of structural damage.

“It was windy with scattered rains, but the typhoon just passed. We didn’t encounter any problem. Most complaints monitored at C-3 (command control center) were related to electricity. Concerns were forwarded to Veco (Visayan Electric Co.),” Bañacia said in Cebuano.

There were no reports of swollen rivers and landslides in the mountain barangays as well, he said.

“Everything remained normal in the mountain barangays. The ground was dry despite scattered rains,” he added.

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) 7 prepared 78,381 food packs worth P28.2 million for the families affected by typhoon Ompong. These will be distributed to the provinces of Cebu, Bohol, Negros Oriental and Siquijor.

Almost back to normal

Meanwhile, the Coast Guard Central Visayas (CGCV) has lifted all suspended sea trips in Cebu and Bohol except for vessels plying from Cebu to Samar, Northern Leyte and Western Visayas.

Mike Encina, CGCV public information officer, said the vessels were allowed to travel after the weather bureau Pagasa lifted the gale warning. However, small seacraft like motorized bancas are cautioned against sailing because the sea is still rough and dangerous.

Pagasa Mactan Chief Alberto Quiblat said the gale warning was lifted as early as 5 p.m. yesterday, but in Central Visayas only. The gale warning remains in effect in Regions 6 and 8.

Quiblat said that although typhoon Ompong was spotted exiting the Philippine area of responsibility toward Macau and Hong Kong last night, the condition of the sea was still dangerous, especially outside Region 7. (RTF, EOB, HBL, RDO, RAG)

Source: Ph Local

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