Two years ago, in the wee hours of November 8, Typhoon Yolanda (international name: Haiyan) made its first landfall over the town of Guiuan, in the province of Eastern Samar located in southern Philippines.
Yolanda, said to be the most powerful storm to make landfall in recorded history, caught the national government unprepared and paralyzed local government units.
The massive typhoon affected millions in nine regions, 44 provinces, and more than 12,000 barangays. Nine in 10 of those affected were from Western, Central, and Eastern Visayas (Regions 6, 7, and 8).
With 6,300 dead people in its wake, Yolanda outranked Typhoon Uring, which caused the Ormoc tragedy and left 5,101 persons dead in 1993; Typhoon Sendong in 2011 that left 1,286 people dead; and Typhoon Pablo in 2012, which killed 1,248.
Nine in 10 of those reported dead, missing, and injured from Yolanda were from Eastern Visayas (Region 8).
Yolanda is also considered the most destructive typhoon to the Philippines, damaging P95 billion worth of properties.
By comparison, the cost of damage from Typhoon Pablo (2012) was pegged at P43.2 billion; Typhoon Pepeng (2009), P27.2 billion; Typhoon Pedring (2011), P15.4 billion; Typhoon Frank (2008), P12.3 billion; Typhoon Juan (2010), P12 billion; and Tropical Storm Ondoy (2009), P10.9 billion.
As the country commemorates the second year since Yolanda struck, let's take a look back at the immense loss of lives and massive destruction it caused.