Rappler Newscast | July 16, 2014
Tonight on Rappler.
- Typhoon Glenda pummels Metro Manila and surrounding provinces leaving at least 20 people dead.
- Hints from Pope Francis on the controversial issue of allowing priests to marry causes confusion in the Vatican.
- Filipino-American and undocumented immigrant Jose Antonio Vargas is arrested by US border agents and set free.
TYPHOON GLENDA HITS METRO MANILA, PARTS OF LUZON
Typhoon Rammasun, known locally as Glenda, pummelled parts of Central Luzon, Southern Luzon, and Bicol for the past 24 hours.
It is now at the South China Sea or West Philippine Sea, and is expected to be out of the Philippine Area of Responsibility by Thursday afternoon, July 17.
State weather bureau PAGASA says Glenda’s eye was located 160 kilometers west of Zambales as of 4 pm.
Moving at 24 kilometers per hour, Glenda slightly weakened after passing through the Calabarzon region with maximum sustained winds of up to 140 kph near the
center and gusts of up to 170 kph.
Storm signal levels downgrade to Signal Number 1, which includes Metro Manila and the provinces of Laguna, Batangas, northern part of Occidental and Oriental Mindoro, Zambales, Tarlac, Pampanga, Bataan, Bulacan, Rizal, Cavite, Lubang Island, and Pangasinan.
At least 20 people are reported dead by 6pm with 7 injured and 6 missing.
Fallen debris and trees caused most of the deaths and injuries.
Authorities continue to receive more reports that need to be validated.
Among the dead is an 11-month-old girl in Cavite.
She was inside her home when a concrete wall fell, crushing her.
There were two other deaths in the province: a man living in a shanty and a 22-year-old man who was riding a motorcycle during the height of Glenda.
He was killed after a telephone pole fell on him.
The Department of Social Welfare reports over 423,000 individuals or 76,000 families have been displaced by Glenda.
Over 200 houses were also reported damaged.
A total of around half a million people were affected.
Many areas have no power, with 86% of Meralco subscribers affected in Metro Manila and most of Luzon.
Meralco says that transmission lines of the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines in south Luzon were destroyed by the typhoon.
Power is slowly being restored in areas hit by the blackout since 2pm Wednesday, but is unclear when power will be totally restored.
As Glenda moved away from Metro Manila, water levels at the Marikina River subsides to 15.1 meters, bringing the alert down to level 1 as of 4pm Wednesday.
Provinces Bataan, Cavite, and Zambales bear the brunt of Glenda’s wrath, with Cavite and the city of Muntinlupa declaring a state of calamity.
The provinces of Albay, Camarines Sur, and Camarines Norte in the Bicol region also declared a state of calamity Tuesday night.
As of Wednesday, Albay declares it achieves its zero casualty goal.
Glenda hit most of the Bicol region and some parts of eastern Visayas.
PREPARED MANILA SURVIVES GLENDA
Filipinos were warned about the threat of storm surges from Typhoon Rammasun or Glenda.
How did the bayside city Manila survive the typhoon?
Pia Ranada reports.
Typhoon Glenda covers Manila in curtains of water.
It's the first typhoon to make rainfall in 2014.
More aware now because of typhoons of previous years,
Manila prepares for the onslaught.
Employees of the Metro Manila Development Authority lay down a defensive wall of sand bags in Manila Bay along Roxas Boulevard.
The sandbags are for the 2-meter storm surge predicted to happen as the eye of the typhoon nears Manila Bay.
FRANCIS TOLENTINO, MMDA CHAIRMAN: The purpose of these bags is to increase the height of the dike, the water breaker as well as to increase the length. In case of a possible projected 2-meter storm surge I think this would also help. Ito ang historically na tinatamaan kasi ito yung gitna eh.
(This is historically what gets hit because this is the center.)
At 8 in the morning, the eye of Glenda comes and goes, thankfully, without the surge.
So Manila turns it attention to other pressing matters
such as roads blocked by fallen trees.
JOSEPH ESTRADA, MANILA CITY MAYOR: Maraming mga kalyeng hindi madaanan eh. Nagbagsakan yung mga puno kaya ngayon, dalawapu’t anim na towing trucks kinukuha ngayon kaya malinis-linis na. Tsaka ang maganda ngayon, hindi masyadong bumaha ang Maynila.
(Many roads are impassable. Trees were falling so now we are deploying 26 towing trucks so it's cleaner. What's good this time around, Manila was not that flooded.)
But while the city itself did not suffer great damage, lives have been turned upside down.
There are more than 4,300 people in this evacuation center in Baseco.
SHEENA AYADIN, RESIDENT, BASECO, MANILA: Malakas yung hangin eh nakatulog kami, kahimbingan ng tulog, eh lumipad po yung isang yero namin. Tapos hinabol pa nga ng asawa ko tapos tinalian yung bubong. Tapos yun hanggang ng umaga na lang, lahat na ng yero namin natanggal na.
(The wind was strong, we fell asleep. One of the metal sheets of our roof flew away. My husband ran after it and tied our roof. But in the morning, our entire roof was gone.)
I visit Sheena's village to see the damage.
PIA RANADA, REPORTING: I’m now in village 649, Baseco in Manila and behind me you can see a boat that fell down this morning around 8 am because of Typhoon Glenda’s strong winds. Nobody got hurt because the entire village was evacuated the previous night. But the boat apparently has been inland for 2 years being repaired. This just proves how powerful Typhoon Glenda’s winds were but at least here in Manila, people’s lives were spared.
The evacuees have not yet been allowed to return to their homes, but that doesn't mean they can't start rebuilding.
Further down the road, street vendors are back in business hours after the typhoon’s center passed over their village.
Life just can’t wait to get back to normal.
Pia Ranada, Rappler, Manila.
TYPHOON GLENDA LEAVES THOUSANDS STRANDED
Glenda leaves thousands stranded all over the Philippines.
Strong winds damage two international planes parked at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Wednesday.
The head of the Air Safety Foundation says a Singapore Airlines and a Malaysian Airlines plane were airborne for a short time when strong gusts lifted their wings.
Both planes are still at the airport for repairs.
NAIA suspended operations 7am Wednesday and resumed 11 am.
That stranded 302 domestic flights and 93 international flights.
The Philippine Coast Guard or PCG reports a total of 6,551 passengers, 614 rolling cargoes, 37 vessels and 24 motor bancas are stranded in various ports all over the country.
The National Disaster Risk Reduction Council also reports vessel MV Ocean Hope with 24 crew members on board ran aground north of San Nicolas Shoal in Cavite.
It’s now drifting towards Corregidor Island.
Railway operations remain suspended.
Light Rail Transit Authority spokesman Hernando Cabrera tweets “Due to operational, technical and power supply concerns, the LRT and MRT will no longer resume operations today.”
Railway operations will resume Thursday with enough power supply.
Malacanang announces work in government offices resume tomorrow.
Local governments will decide whether classes, which had been suspended across all levels since yesterday, will resume tomorrow.
For the complete list on school class suspensions, log on to www.rappler.com, and go to the bottom of the front page
and click on ‘class suspension”.
#RELIEFPH: HELP TYPHOON GLENDA VICTIMS
Rappler's civic engagement arm MovePH, in cooperation with BlogWatch's citizen advocates, is compiling a list of relief and volunteer efforts initiated by groups and individuals to help those affected by the typhoon.
Share this with your friends, families, and networks, and encourage them to extend help to those in need.
Do you know of an open relief operations center?
Help us create this public list by visiting rplr.co/glendarelief.
AFTER #GLENDAPH, MORE BAD WEATHER COMING?
Are we in for more bad weather?
State weather bureau PAGASA on Wednesday says the next weather disturbance may come this weekend.
The report aligns with new low pressure areas spotted by space agency NASA in the northwestern Pacific Ocean.
On their Hurricane web page NASA posts an image of spotted formations of System 93W and 94W.
NDRRMC chief Alexander Pama says, the possible formation of storms is "too early to tell.”
NO YOLANDA REHAB PLAN AMID TYPHOON GLENDA
Here comes the next typhoon, but rehabilitation has not even started in Haiyan hit areas.
Rehabilitation Secretary Panfilo Lacson says his office is waiting for President Benigno Aquino to approve
local recovery and rehabilitation plans of Tacloban City, Leyte, Samar, and Cebu.
He adds, the phased implementation is -quote- “expected to start in full swing upon approval by the President.”
Lacson says if he did not propose the staggered approach all 171 local government units affected by Yolanda
“will be waiting for each other, which would delay the whole effort.”
Yolanda survivors once again felt the effects of a typhoon as the northern part of Leyte, and the rest of Samar and Eastern Samar were placed under storm warning signals.
Typhoon Glenda forced at least 7,300 residents from Yolanda-hit areas to evacuate.
In April, estimates by the DSWD showed that up to 130,000 Yolanda survivors still lived in tents.
CATAPANG IS NEW AFP CHIEF OF STAFF
Lt Gen Gregorio Pio Catapang is the new Armed Forces chief of staff.
Catapang will be replacing Armed Forces chief of staff General Emmanuel Bautista, who retires July 20.
The turnover of command will be on Friday.
A former commanding general of the Northern Luzon Command, Catapang was part of the Reform the Armed Forces Movement that plotted the revolt against former president Ferdinand Marcos.
2014 marks a shake-up in the military's top brass after the retirement of key commanders.
Three more generals holding crucial command posts are retiring this year.
LITERARY JUDGES QUIT AS SINGAPORE GAY BOOK ROW ESCALATES
Censorship in Singapore? On Wednesday, judges of a literary prize quit to protest the Singapore National Library's plans to destroy three children's books with homosexual themes.
The three judges of the non-fiction category of the Singapore Literature Prize condemn the National Library Board or NLB decision last week.
The three books it wants to destroy – And Tango Makes Three, The White Swan Express, and Who’s In My Family. In a statement, prominent literary figures T. Sasitharan, Romen Bose, and Robin Hemley say destroying the books is "bigoted and sets a very worrying precedent that it is acceptable to discriminate against anyone who may hold differing values and opinions".
The state-funded NLB says it’s reacting to complaints by a parent and its own internal review.
POPE'S HINTS ON MARRIED PRIESTS TROUBLE VATICAN
Three times, Pope Francis hinted at the possibility of priests being able to marry – creating confusion in the Vatican.
Francis has talked about changes to the tradition of celibate priests twice in three months but without any specific reforms.
On a flight back from his trip to the Middle East, Francis points out there were already married priests in the Ukrainian Greek Catholic and Coptic Catholic churches.
The European Federation of Married Catholic Priests estimates more than 100,000 former Catholic priests have gotten married over the years – amounting to roughly a quarter of the number of current priests.
Earlier this year women involved with priests from Italy wrote an open letter to the pope asking for a Vatican audience to tell Francis of their "suffering" because of the secret lives they have to lead.
Vatican expert Andrea Tornielli says the issue is close to Francis because he was close to an Argentine bishop who renounced the priesthood for love.
Italian daily La Repubblica quoted Francis as saying on priestly celibacy: "There are solutions and I will find them."
Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi denies Francis’ comments.
THE wRap: YOUR WORLD IN ONE READ
20 DEAD, SCORES INJURED IN MOSCOW SUBWAY CRASH
Twenty people died and nearly 130 more were hurt after a train derailed in Moscow during rush hour Tuesday.
It’s the worst accident to hit one of the world's busiest subways.
Russian media reports passengers fell like dominoes when the train braked abruptly derailing three carriages.
Initial investigations say the break was caused by a false alarm triggered by a supply voltage dip.
GAZA ROCKET KILLS FIRST ISRAELI
Israel resumed attacks against Gaza Tuesday firing dozens of rockets over the border, killing an Israeli man.
The renewed bombing comes after Hamas rejected a truce offer from Israel.
The first Israeli death of the conflict came after nearly 1,000 rockets and mortar rounds hit the Jewish state.
Four Israelis were seriously wounded.
Medics say the strikes killed five Palestinians, raising the Gaza death toll 197 in eight days of violence.
FIL-AM JOURNALIST HELD THEN FREED AT US BORDER
Pulitzer-prize winning journalist and activist Jose Antonio Vargas was freed by US border agents after being held for several hours Tuesday.
Vargas’s group Define American says he was in Texas to highlight the plight of tens of thousands of children from Central America who went across the border in the past year in search of a better life.
Campaigners and leaders including the mayor of New York called for his release from detention.
For the full top 10 visit Rappler.com’s ‘the wRap.’
PACQUIAO TO FACE CHRIS ALGIERI IN NOV 22 FIGHT IN MACAU
Manny Pacquiao has his next opponent.
ESPN.com reports the WBO welterweight title holder will face New Yorker Chris Algieri at the Venetian Resort in Macau on November 22.
This is Pacquiao's second-time fighting in Macau.
His first was in November 2013 when he outboxed Brandon Rios coming back from two consecutive losses against Timothy Bradley and rival Juan Manuel Marquez.
Algieri was an unknown fighter until he scored an upset win against Ruslan Provodnikov to take the WBO junior welterweight title.
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