Thursday, November 29, 2007

Storm surge displaces 5,000 in 16 coastal towns in Misor; kills 1

CAGAYAN de Oro Journal (Ben Balce / Nov 29) - Massive flooding caused by big waves and strong winds submerged some 16 coastal towns in Misamis Oriental early dawn on Wednesday.

“Big waves and massive flooding left hundreds of destroyed houses and thousand of homeless people,” said Misamis Oriental provincial disaster coordinating council coordinator Teddy Sabugaa.

Sabugaa said the worst flooding that hit several towns in the province, which is situated below sea level, displaced at least 5,245 people or 1,049 families in 44 villages in the said 16 towns.

Sabugaa said the towns affected were Balingasag, Lagonglong, Villanueva, Tagoloan, Balingoan, Sugbong-Cogon, Lugait, Initao, Salay, Jasaan, Libertad, Manticao, Kinoguitan,Naawan, Binoangan, and Magsayasay.

Sabugaa said the storm surge composed of intense waves started at 7 p.m. Tuesday until 2 a.m. Wednesday.

Over local radio (Bombo radio), an unidentified old man in Jasaan town was reportedly killed in heart attack due to big waves and strong winds.

“We are still looking the real caused of his death including his identity,” said Jasaan town Mayor Redentor Jardin.

Philippine Institute of Volcanology & Seismology (Philvolcs) based in Camiguin province confirmed that strong winds and big waves were due to the effect of typhoons Lando and Mina.

“Walang tsunami, dahil nasa lupa ang effect,” said resident volcanologist Salugsugan.

Salugsugan even said that earthquake happened in some areas in the country including Metro Manila on Tuesday afternoon affected and have the storm surge.

According to the Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office (PSWDO) of Misamis Oriental, some 165 houses were destroyed while 373 others were partially damaged.
Sabugaa said heavy floods also damaged a 4.2 hectares rice field in Lagonglong and CVO (Civilian Volunteer Office) out post in Lugait town.

He also said the effects of giant waves damaged several fishing boats. Number of fishing boats that were totally damage were 2 in Lagonglong, 5 in Magsaysay, 2 in Binoangan, and 2 in Kinoguitan.

Sabugaa even said the storm surge also damaged a 12-meter sea wall in Naawan as it was totally washed away by big waves including sea wall in Manticao that was partially damaged.

Sabugaa said the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist did not yet give the total crop loss as they were still waiting other reports.

“Distributions of relief goods are ongoing in the east and west part of Misamis Oriental, as victims really need used clothes and foods in the evacuation centers in their respective areas,” said Sabugaa.

Misamis Oriental Philippine Rescue 2000 president Michael Angelo Bustamante said the affected families were in terrible need of assistance from concerned partners and individuals.

“Most of the displaced persons do not have a home to go back to because these were either swept away by the tidal surge,” said Bustamante.
Bustamante said the victims of floods were also in need of food, materials to build shelter, medicines, clothes, kitchen utensils, and other basic necessities to augment their everyday living.


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