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State of calamity to be declared in Daanbantayan town

By: Rosalie Abatayo - CDN Digital | December 25,2019 - 09:18 PM

Strong winds brought about by Typhoon Ursula topple trees in Daanbantayan town, northern Cebu. | CDND PHOTO / Gerard Francisco

DAANBANTAYAN, Cebu — Uprooted trees, roofless houses, shattered pump boats.

These are common sights in the northern Cebu town of Daanbantayan on December 25, Christmas Day.

The strong winds brought about by Typhoon Ursula on Christmas Eve, December 24, toppled banana plants and uprooted fully grown trees.

Debris, including broken Christmas decor, can be seen on the streets and the plaza.

As many of the structures are not typhoon-proof, it was common to see houses without roofs.

When asked where the roofs went, residents reply: “Nilupad sa kakusog sa hangin.”

(They got carried away by strong winds.)

Pumpboats docked on shore were shattered by strong waves; torrential rain destroyed roofs made of light materials.

With the amount of destruction that Typhoon Ursula brought to Daanbantayan town, the Local Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (LDRRMC) has recommended the declaration of a state of calamity in the municipality.

It is common to see uprooted trees around town after Typhoon Ursula caused damage on plants, houses and government buildings. | CDND PHOTO / Gerard Francisco

“Based on our initial assessment, we believe that it is necessary that we recommend for the declaration of a state of calamity in our town,” Daanbantayan Vice Mayor Gilbert Arrabis told CDN Digital.

Arrabis said a special session will be held on Thursday, December 26, to pass a resolution declaring a state of calamity in Daanbantayan.

Arrabis said the local government unit has about P10 million in disaster fund.

Thirty percent of this amount can be allocated as quick response fund which will be disbursed if a state of calamity will be declared.

Arrabis said the LDRRMC required barangay officials to conduct a damage and needs assessment in their respective jurisdictions and submit their findings on Thursday, December 26.

Arrabis said houses made of light materials were damaged by the typhoon.

Infrastructures such as the municipal cultural center, Local Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (LDRRMO), wharf and waiting sheds were also destroyed by strong winds.

Initial relief assistance, Arrabis said, should be taken from the disaster funds of the barangays.

This lantern falls on the ground as strong winds brought about by Typhoon Ursula visited Daanbantayan town. | CDND PHOTO / Gerard Francisco

As of 4 p.m. on Wednesday, December 25, close to 9,000 families from the coastal and island villages of Daanbantayan were sheltered in different evacuation centers.

Meanwhile, electricity has not been restored yet in the town since power went out a few minutes after 9 p.m. on Tuesday, December 24.

Arrabis said security is one of their top concerns considering the town-wide blackout.

“Based on experience, atong Yolanda, problema gyud ta sa security kun walay kuryente. Naay mga false alarm, mamroblema gyud ta nga ang mga tawo mag-panic,” Arrabis said.

(Based on our Typhoon Yolanda experience [in 2013], security is an issue when there is no electricity. There are false alarms. It is a problem for us as it usually causes panic among the people.)

He said the town’s local police has requested for additional 16 policemen from the regional office while power is not yet restored in Daanbantayan. / celr

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TAGS: Daanbantayan town, state of calamity, Typhoon Ursula

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