MANILA, Phillippines (4th UPDATE) – Catanduanes is now under a state of calamity after being heavily damaged by Typhoon Nina (Nock-ten) on Sunday, December 25, according to Governor Joseph Cua. (READ: Typhoon Nina makes landfall in Catanduanes)
“Catanduanes is now under state of calamity” after a resolution by the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, Cua said in a message to Rappler on Monday, December 26.
On Monday afternoon, the Philippine Air Force deployed one of its C130s from Mactan Air Base to Catanduanes to bring relief goods to the province.
The typhoon made its first landfall in the town of Bato early Sunday evening, Christmas day.
At least 50% to 70% of power is out in the province because of fallen electrical posts, leaving majority of roads also impassable.
“Reports also indicate 21 landslides in [the towns of] San Miguel going to Viga, Panganiban, and Bagamanoc, and numerous destruction of electrical posts and lines and uprooting of several huge trees which hamper transportation,” Cua’s message continued.
“Walang makadaan. So far, motorcycle ang puwedeng dumaan but binubuhat pag may nadaanan na natumbang poste o pag may natumbang puno. Hopefully, baka bukas puwede na, okay na rin,” Cua earlier said.
(No one can pass. So far, only motorcycles can pass, but they have to be carried when there are fallen trees and posts. Hopefully, tomorrow, the roads will be passable already.)
He also said electricity supply in the province would take time to be fixed.
With maximum winds of up to 185 km/h and gustiness of up to 255 km/h, he added there were a lot of houses either damaged or destroyed by the typhoon.
He said Nina is comparable to Typhoon Rosing (Angela) in 1995, one of the strongest typhoons to hit land in the Philippines, also causing massive damage in Catanduanes.
“Maraming na-unroof na bahay. In fact yung ibang nakita ko sa picture, yung ibang mga newly constructed multi-purpose buildings nagiba, including the posts.”
(A lot of roofs were blown away. In fact, I saw from other photos that even those newly constructed multi-purpose buildings were destroyed, including posts.)
So far, Cua confirmed one casualty in Virac, Catanduanes. He could not provide details yet.
“With Nina’s strength, if we hadn’t done any preemptive measures, there would be more casualties,” Cua said.
Aside from Catanduanes, neighboring Camarines Sur has also been placed under a state of calamity by its governor, Miguel Villafuerte.
Relief goods needed
In a meeting at the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council on Monday, Cua announced that the province badly needs relief goods to be given to affected residents.
“Kailangan namin ngayon is relief goods. Yung mga na-damage na bahay, yung mga tao diyan sa evacuation center, babalik na yan. Magre-repair na ng mga bahay nila, siyempre hindi sila makakatrabaho. So kailangan nila ng relief goods para ma-sustain naman nila yung pagkain ng pamilya,” he said.
(We need relief goods now. Families at the evacuation center will go back to their houses and repair them. Of course, they will not be able to work. So they really need relief goods to sustain the food of their families.)
He said that delivery of goods will not be an issue since the roads will be fixed in the next two days, and the weather is currently good. The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines also allowed a C-130 plane to fly to Catanduanes, Cua said.
Once the typhoon signal for the province is lifted, ports will also resume operations.
When an area is placed under a state of calamity, the local government will have access to funds to help them respond to the needs of typhoon victims in the area.
Cua said that his province badly needs funds to help them recover from Nina.
“We have limited funds, in Catanduanes we have only less than P500 million internal revenue allotment. We are 98% IRA [Internal Revenue Allotment] dependent, so we really need the support of the national government.” – Rappler.com