Batanes placed under state of calamity
By Oliver T. Baccay
BASCO, Batanes, Aug 1 (PIA)--The entire Batanes province has been placed under a state of calamity after successive earthquakes hit the province on Saturday morning, leading to at least nine deaths and several injured.
Based on the report of the Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (RDRRMC) region 2, at least 185 houses were totally damaged while 81 were partially damaged due to the series of earthquakes that hit the province.
Governor Marilou Cayco said they need to declare state of calamity in the whole province to enable faster, efficient and effective delivery of assistance to the affected families considering that the number of totally damaged houses has significantly increased from the 15 houses that were initially reported earlier.
Cayco said the assistance from the various agencies and non-government organizations are now pouring into the province, especially to Itbayat town which incurred severe destructions to properties and infrastructures.
“Some families have already returned to their respective homes, but many are still living in tents at the town’s plaza as their houses are still unsafe to occupy," Cayco said.
Earlier, the council confirmed that nine people were killed and 64 injured when the twin earthquakes struck the province.
According to the latest report of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), more than P2 billion worth of government properties were damaged to include public buildings, slope protections, school buildings and national roads.
The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and the National Housing Authority have, earlier, vowed to give emergency shelter assistance to the families whose houses were totally and partially damaged. (ALM/OTB/PIA-Batanes)