Search and retrieval operation in Legazpi, Albay
The wrath of tropical depression ‘Usman’ in the Bicol Region has caused the death of 57 individuals in landslides and drowning in floodwaters.
Based on the latest report of the Civil Defense Region, Camarines Sur has the highest number of casualties with 23 deaths.
This was followed by Albay with 15, Masbate with 7 and 6 for both Camarines Sur and Sorsogon.
Apart from the casualties, 11 persons were recorded injured and 11 others went missing on the onset of Usman in the region.
The Office of the Civil Defense Region 5 Regional Director Claudio Yucut insisted that they prepared for Usman and the local government did not lack in reminding residents of the possible disaster.
He said the problem was negligence of some residents since Usman was declared only as a low pressure area.
“Dahil na-declare na kasi nung umaga na-declare zero tropical cyclone warning ibig sabihin low pressure area na lang at kinagabihan doon nangyari yung maraming landslides. Yung nga tao kampante, zero na tropical warning signal,” said Office of the Civil Defense Dir. Claudio Yucut.
In Albay, two isolated landslides occurred.
In the town of Tiwi, 12 individuals have died in the landslide while three others died in Brgy. San Francisco, Legazpi City.
“Paano ba yan saan tayo hihingi ng tulong kasi ang bilis bilis ng pangyayari ng makita ko wala na talaga sila,” said Nany Lina, a mother of a victim.
The local government has promised to provide financial aid for the victims of the calamity.
Due to the serious damages left by Usman, Camarines Sur, Albay and Sorsogon were declared under state of calamity.
Although Usman has left the Philippine area of responsibility, isolated parts in Bicol Region are still experiencing rains.
OCD has yet to estimate the total cost of its damage to agriculture and properties.
Meanwhile, the search and retrieval operation continues for the victims of the calamity. — Joan Nano | UNTV News & Rescue