Death toll from TD Usman reaches 122

admin   •   January 3, 2019   •   2490

 

Rescue operation in landslide site in Sagñay, Camarines Sur

MANILA, Philippines —The number of fatalities from the wrath of Tropical Depression Usman has increased.

Based on the latest records of National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), there are 122 casualties from MIMAROPA, Region 5 and Region 8.

Authorities are still searching for 28 missing individuals while 60 others were injured.

The total cost of agriculture damage in Region 5 and Region 8 has reached P500,000 billion. — UNTV News & Rescue

Residents, NGOs urged not to violate ‘off-limits’ order on Taal’s danger zone

Marje Pelayo   •   January 15, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Several residents are risking their lives to salvage their belongings and animals despite the dangers of returning to Taal volcano island.

The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) reiterated that going inside the 14-kilometer permanent danger zone in the volcano island is illegal and highly dangerous because Taal Volcano may erupt anytime.

Kung ni-rescue man po nila, mabuti at nagpapasalamat po tayo na ganun na nabuhay po ang mga alaga nila (It’s good and we appreciate that they were able to rescue their animals alive),” NDRRMC Spokesperson Mark Timbal said.

Pero ang ikinakakaba po naming ay iyong kanilang pagbalik. Kasi they violated an ‘off-limits’ arrangement natin at saka ‘yung mandatory evacuation order for that particular area (But what we are concerned about is their journey back to the safe zone. They are violating our ‘off-limits’ arrangement and the mandatory evacuation order for that particular area),” he added.

Several images and videos were uploaded on social media showing residents ferrying their livestock to the shore.

Also, several members of animal welfare teams were reportedly caught stranded on the island.

According to the Philippine Animal Welfare Society (PAWS), the three members of the group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), were already rescued to safety.

“Kaninang umaga, tumawag kasi sila na medyo na-stranded nga daw sila. So, they asked for help to contact ang Coast Guard na mabilis naman pong umaksyon. Nakuha naman po sila (They called this morning asking for help to contact the Coast Guard because they were stranded. The Coast Guard immediately launched a rescue operation and they were brought to safety),” explained PAWS Executive Director Anna Cabrera.

The NDRRMC said residents and NGOs should coordinate first with them before they venture to the danger zone to discuss proper rescue procedures in rescuing the animals.

Maganda po ang intensyon nila, pero (Their intention is good but) what we are worried about is, what if something bad happens and they are within the 14-kilometer danger zone,” Timbal said.

Hindi po natin maga-guarantee ang safety ng mga taong ito (We cannot guarantee the safety of these people),” he added. MNP (with details from Harlene Delgado)

NDRRMC: Over 50,000 people affected by Taal eruption

Aileen Cerrudo   •   January 15, 2020

The number of people affected by the Taal eruption has already reached over 50,000 according to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC).

In their 6:00 am report on January 15, the NDRRMC recorded a total of 53,019 persons or 12,486 families in Batangas and Cavite that were affected by the Taal eruption.

Around 10,000 of these families or over 43,000 persons are currently taking shelter in 217 evacuation centers.

READ: Intense earthquakes in Taal indicate possible ‘explosive eruption’ — PHIVOLCS

The NDRRMC has also recorded 466 volcanic earthquakes. Cracks can already be seen in houses and roads in Batangas due to the volcanic earthquakes.—AAC

Australia bushfires death toll increases to 26

UNTV News   •   January 8, 2020

Sydney – Australian authorities confirmed Wednesday the death of a firefighter as a result of bushfires that have ravaged the country since September, bringing the death toll to 26.

Matt Kavanagh, 43, died wile on duty after a Friday crash between two vehicles which police linked to the bushfires, Victoria’s Emergency Services Minister Lisa Neville said.

This is the third death in Victoria due to the fires, which have already caused 20 fatalities in New South Wales and three more in South Australia.

The confirmation came as firefighters continued their struggle to control dozens of fires that have been raging in the country’s southeast as temperatures are expected to rise above 40C (104F) at the end of the week.

On Tuesday, they took advantage of improved weather conditions to bolster preparations against the blazes that continue to burn in those areas.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison, during a visit to Kangaroo Island – the country’s third largest isle – told reporters weather conditions were expected to worsen in the coming days.

Two people died on the island at the end of the year amid the fires still blazing countrywide.

The fires have burned more than 50 houses and almost half of this tourist island, located some 112 kilometers (69.5 miles) from Adelaide, home to 60,000 kangaroos, 50,000 koalas and other endangered animals who are suffering the catastrophe’s consequences.

The Insurance Council of Australia said Tuesday a total AU$700 million ($485 million) of accumulated damages have been recorded since September, with nearly 9,000 fire-related claims.

Morrison, heavily criticized for his handling of the crisis, announced Monday a package of AU$2 billion over the next two years to finance the recovery of affected areas.

The fires have razed more than 8 million hectares of land throughout the country, equivalent to the area of Austria, including some 2,000 homes.

They broke out before the beginning of summer in the southern hemisphere, which begins in December and where a shortage of rain is expected until the end of March. EFE-EPA

wat/tk-sk/lds

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