Death toll in CDO rises to 495


Posted at Dec 19 2011 10:47 AM | Updated as of Dec 20 2011 12:54 AM

CAGAYAN DE ORO (UPDATE) - The death toll left behind by tropical storm Sendong in Cagayan de Oro City has reached 495 as of Monday morning, police chief Senior Superintendent Gerardo Rosales.


Rosales said the body count is based on the figures provided by rescuers.


Authorities said thousands of flood-affected residents are now faced with the problem of lack of drinking water.


The Cagayan de Oro City water district (COW-D)  said it will take a month to restore normal water services after the floods destroyed pipelines servicing thousands of residents in the city.


Bottled water in grocery stores are also in short supply due to large demand.


Authorities have opened fire hydrants as well as free refilling stations in affected barangays. Water district officials have advised residents to boil the water before drinking.


At least 4,000 families are still staying in evacuation centers. Some have contracted illnesses such as fever, cough and colds.


Food and drinking water in the evacuation centers are scarce. Some restrooms in the evacuation centers are also in need of repair.


The City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council said 474 people have died while 482 remain missing as of Monday morning.


Funeral parlors said they are now running out of coffins because of the number of the dead.


Sagip Kapamilya, meanwhile, distributed relief goods to over 6,000 families.