Masbate now under state of calamity
MANILA, Philippines – Masbate is now under state of calamity, hours after Typhoon Ruby (international name: Hagupit) made its second landfall in the province on Sunday, December 7.
Masbate City information officer Jojo Cortes confirmed with Rappler in a phone interview they have received the directive from the Office of the Governor.
With no electricity since Saturday evening, December 6, Cortes said they have not had contact with the municipality of Caitangan, where Ruby hit land Sunday morning.
"Medyo tumitila na yung ulan, pero malakas pa rin ang bugso ng hangin. Maraming flooded areas (The rains have subsided a bit, but the winds are still strong. There are many flooded areas)," Cortes told Rappler.
Transportation to the southern part of the province is also difficult after the Bañadero River overflowed, he added.
While there have been reports of flooded areas and impassable roads, Cortes said there are no confirmed reports of casualties in the province.
Earlier, Merien Esber of the Masbate Public Information Office said that a total of 78,861 individuals or 16,838 families from 20 municipalities and the city of Masbate are already in evacuation centers as of Saturday.
In Masbate City, Cortes said food supplies are running out, with only 100 food packs available for 3,957 families or 15,291 individuals who were evacuated.
He said the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) is already preparing and distributing food packs for the evacuees.
As of 3 pm Sunday, state weather bureau PAGASA located Ruby at 25 km southeast of Masbate City.
The typhoon is expected to make its third landfall over Sibuyan Island Sunday night, between 8 and 10 pm. – with a report from Katerina Francisco/Rappler.com