AirAsia plane search, China blocks Gmail, tropical storm Seniang | The wRap

Rappler.com
AirAsia plane search, China blocks Gmail, tropical storm Seniang | The wRap
Search teams recover 40 bodies of Air Asia passengers from the sea. China blocks all access to Gmail. Landslides and floods from Tropical storm Seniang kill at least 30 in the Philippines

Today on Rappler.

  • Search teams for missing AirAsia plane recover 3 bodies from the sea.
  • China blocks all access to Gmail.
  • At least 30 die from landslides and floods caused by tropical storm Seniang in the Philippines.

DEBRIS ‘FROM AIRASIA PLANE,’ 3 BODIES FOUND
An Indonesian warship recovers more than 3 bodies from the Java Sea. Earlier an Indonesian navy spokesman said they have – “retrieved 40 bodies and the number is growing. They are very busy now.” An aerial search spotted debris floating on the ocean which included an emergency slide and plane door. Indonesian rescue chief Bambang Soelistyo says search operations are concentrated around 160 kilometers southwest of Pangkalan Bun town on Borneo island. Searchers onboard an air force plane spotted a “shadow” on the seabed in the area believed to be the missing Flight QZ8501.

Note: An earlier version of this newscast said 40 bodies were recovered. Only 3 bodies have been recovered as of Dec 30, 9pm, Manila time. The Indonesian Navy spokesperson who said 40 bodies were found later retracted the statement and said it was a “miscommunication with his staff.” 

 
CHINA BLOCKS ACCESS TO GOOGLE E-MAIL SERVICE
China blocks the last remaining access to Google’s popular email service.
Since the 25th anniversary in June of the Tiananmen Square crackdown, Gmail is not accessible from its webpage in China. On Monday, China blocks third-party mail applications that access the email service. China blocks foreign websites using its system dubbed the “Great Firewall” and routinely deletes content considered offensive.
 
NAPOCOR SEEKS POWER RATE HIKE
Customers of the National Power Corporation or NAPOCOR may have to pay more for their electricity if a rate hike is approved by the Energy Regulatory Commission or ERC. In its application to the ERC, the power provider asked for an increase of P1.8 per kilowatt-hour in Luzon, P2.2 in Visayas, and P1.5 in Mindanao. If approved, the rates will be implemented over two years to fully recover P1.6 billion or almost $37 million worth of deferred fuel costs.
 
SWS: FILIPINOS CONSIDER THEMSELVES ‘POOR,’ BUT ‘HOPEFUL’
A Social Weather Station or SWS Survey estimates at least 11.4 million families in the Philippines consider themselves poor. The figure corresponds to 52% of families. The survey also shows record-high levels of poverty thresholds in various regions. For the entire 2014, self-rated poverty among families stood at 54% – up from 52% in 2013 and 2012. But despite this, along with the scandals and tragedies that hit the country in 2014, most Filipinos welcome the new year with hope. Another SWS survey shows 93% of Filipinos enter 2015 with hope rather than fear. The figures are similar to last year’s. Filipinos’ optimism for the new year has not dipped below 90% since 2010 and has been above 80% since the poll started in 2000. 

SENIANG MAINTAINS STRENGTH, SIGNAL NO. 1 OVER LUZON
Two days of heavy flooding and landslides kill people as tropical storm Seniang – international name Jangmi – batters parts of Visayas and Mindanao. Local officials say at least 30 die, while the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council says at least 21. Thousands leave their homes as the storm brings heavy rains and floods, triggering landslides in some areas and ‘unprecedented flooding’ in Bohol, which is now under a state of calamity. As of 5pm, tropical storm Seniang speeds up and now moves towards Cuyo Island, carrying maximum winds of up to 65 kilometers per hour near the center, and gustiness of up to 80 kilometers per hour. Seniang is located at 108 kilometers southwest of Iloilo City and is expected to be 110 kilometers west of Puerto Princesa City on Wednesday. Storm signal number 2 is up over Cuyo Island, Palawan, Guimaras, Southern Antique and Southern Iloilo. Signal number 1 is up over Calamian Group of Islands, Negros Occidental, Aklan, Capiz, the rest of Iloilo, and the rest of Antique.
 
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– Rappler.com

Production Staff

EXECUTIVE PRODUCER / WRITER Lilibeth Frondoso
DIRECTOR Rupert Ambil
ASSOCIATE PRODUCER / PUBLISHER Rodneil Quiteles
  Dindin Reyes
HEAD WRITER / PROMPTER Katerina Francisco
  Marga Deona
  Bianca Gacad
MASTER EDITOR / PLAYBACK Exxon Ruebe
  Emerald Hidalgo
  Jaene Zaplan
TECHNICAL DIRECTOR / CAMERAMAN Charlie Salazar
  Adrian Portugal
  Francis Lopez
  Naoki Mengua
GRAPHICS Jessica Lazaro
  Raffy de Guzman
GRAPHICS DESIGN / ANIMATION Acid House

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