PHILIPPINE Red Cross volunteer surveys the damage in Guinobatan, Albay’s Barangay San Francisco, where houses were buried under lahar from Mayon Volcano. PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF PHIL RED CROSS
Residents of Albay in super typhoon-hit Bicol Region reported seeing bodies floating on rivers the day after “Rolly” battered their province.
One body was found Monday morning near Purok 4 in Barangay Tagas, Daraga, while another was spotted near Nagasgasan Bridge in Barangay Obaliw-Rinas in Oas town.
Clara Jacob, the netizen who posted the Daraga incident, said the body was found with a cash-filled wallet but without identification cards. The body was taken to Bejer Funeral Homes.
The body found in Oas was processed by the municipal police, according to netizen Luisa Rayco.
In an interview with the Daily Tribune, Rayco said body looked that of a boy around 12 years old.
As of press time, the death toll in the Bicol Region was placed at 20 (14 in Albay, six in Catanduanes) while damage to agriculture and infrastructure have initially reached P5.7 billion, the Office of Civil Defense (OCD) said.
Ten towns in Albay and 29 in Camarines Sur were flooded while lahar flow damaged houses in Guinobatan and Camalig, Sto. Domingo and Tabaco City in Albay.
In Sorsogon, Governor Chiz Escudero said they sent teams to help Albay in road-clearing, relief and rescue operations.
They were composed of the 903rd, 22nd and 31st Infantry Division of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Philippine National Police, Department of Public Works and Highways, Sorsogon Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office and Provincial Engineering Office. From the Sorsogon-Daraga boundary in Barangay Villa Hermosa, they traveled to Daraga until Polangui.
Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella also mobilized an assessment team to assist Bicol.
Cebu City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office head Ramil Ayuman said they met with Labella, Cebu City Department of Social Welfare and Service and other emergency response offices.
Bishop Sofronio Bancud of the Diocese of Cabanatuan, meanwhile, encouraged those who were spared by the super typhoon, the country’s 18th storm this year, to help those heavily affected.
He called for material and spiritual support while parishes within the diocese will facilitate and receive donations.
“Proceeds from donations and relief goods will be immediately sent to the needy dioceses in the Bicol and Southern Tagalog regions,” the bishop said.
In Bataan, Dinalupihan Mayor Angela Garcia said that there is a need to build an evacuation facility to prevent another “Rolly” from claiming lives in her town.
The OCD approved the town’s plan to build a P40-million multipurpose evacuation center on a 1,500-square meter property in Barangay Colo.
“The evacuation facility will be a refuge for residents of Dinalupihan during typhoons and other disasters and calamities. Our area is known for geohazards, flooding and landslides especially during the rainy season,” she said.
Garcia said all their 46 village chiefs are aware of the dangers in their areas and have enough knowledge on what to do during disasters.
WITH A REPORT FROM SUNDY T. LOCUS,
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