Philippines

Typhoon Haiyan: Help The Philippines Survive and Recover

HIGHLIGHTS

■18,000 tarpaulins have been procured. The first 1,100 tarps and emergency water and sanitation supplies will arrive tomorrow via airlift to Cebu City.

■Tropical Depression Zoraida is tracking towards north-eastern Mindanao and central Visayas and will bring heavy rains from Tuesday morning to Wednesday morning in the Visayas in areas that were hit by TY Haiyan.

■World Food Program is setting up support for warehousing and customs clearance at air and seaports, while the US Department of Defense is providing additional large and small aircraft for the delivery of personnel and relief goods.

■The first wave of CRS staff from the HRD and ESA country program offices arriving tonight and tomorrow.

■3.6 million people are located within 50 km of the direct path.

■It is anticipated that Tacloban airport will open to limited commercial flights one week from today.

“Catholic Relief Services, our partners and other aid agencies are in the process of mobilizing resources to help the government and the most affected areas. The typhoon was powerful and expansive, hitting a number of islands. It did not weaken as it passed through and hit a number of islands as a super typhoon. Based on other typhoons, like Typhoon Bopha last year, we can expect that this was a catastrophic typhoon, not only for one island but many.” – Joe Curry, CRS Philippines country representative

CRS Teams Arrive in Leyte

Catholic Relief Services teams arrived at the port in Ormoc (Leyte Island) on Sunday and were in Palo today. Travel has been extremely slow due to roads clogged with debris. Teams report a large percentage of homes are unlivable. Trees and posts are uprooted and shops and other buildings destroyed. Communication with the Manila office only on a very limited basis through satellite phone with poor signal, as they have not reached any area with cell service yet.

Late yesterday the first information arrived from Samar Island and it is similarly as devastated as Tacloban City, a focus of media reporting. Initial reports indicate that hundreds are confirmed dead so far and thousands are missing, according to a statement by a local official on 10 November.

Some Areas Face ‘Total Ruin’

Samar Island has approximately 733,000 people. It was the first location that the storm made landfall. Its residents have not been able to get information out or contact loved ones. Giporlos and Guiuan are reported to be “totally ruined” and 2,000 are listed as missing in Basey alone, according to a member of Samar’s Disaster Management Council. It is assumed that similar situations will be found in other areas of Southern Samar which took Haiyan’s first direct hit. UNDAC assessments teams are conducting aerial surveys of Samar today so some additional information will become available.

In addition to 18,000 tarps, CRS support includes water and hygiene supplies and non-food-item kits for 5,000 families. Cash-for-work community clean up and debris removal area also planned.