Some areas in Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, and Aurora still 'inundated with water': Marcos
MANILA — More than 74,000 people across Luzon fled their homes due to the threat of Typhoon Karding, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) said Monday.
Interior Secretary Benjamin Abalos Jr. told President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. at a briefing of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) that 74,542 individuals—or 19,368 families, were preemptively evacuated in 8 regions as of 5 a.m. Monday.
Thousands of residents from Metro Manila, Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR), Ilocos Region, Cagayan Valley, Central Luzon, Calabarzon, Mimaropa, and Bicol Region were immediately ordered to go to evacuation centers as Karding approached the country, Abalos said.
The breakdown of evacuees were as follows:
- Metro Manila: 8,233 families / 33,043 individuals
- Central Luzon: 6,970 families / 25,358 individuals
- Calabarzon: 3,460 families / 13,892 individuals
- Ilocos Region: 231 families / 821 individuals
- CAR: 201 families / 758 individuals
- Cagayan Valley: 123 families / 390 individuals
- Mimaropa: 148 families / 272 individuals
- Bicol Region: 2 families / 8 individuals
Abalos also took note of some of the areas that were hardest hit by Karding. In Aurora province, some 25,000 residents from the towns of Baler, Casiguran, Dilasag, Dinalungan, Dingalan, and Dipaculao were evacuated.
He added that more than 7,000 residents living near Bulacan's dams also fled their homes.
Abalos praised residents who quickly followed government instructions to evacuate before the typhoon hit.
"So that explains, Mr. President, halos walang fatality po tayo ngayon. Talagang napaghandaan po on the ground," he said.
For his part, Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Erwin Tulfo also reported that food packs were being distributed to 10,000 to 13,000 families affected by Karding.
The NDRRMC also reported that as of Monday morning, 1,208 families or 4,616 people were displaced by the typhoon, most of whom come from Metro Manila.
'WE MAY HAVE GOTTEN LUCKY'
Reacting to the developments on Karding, Marcos lauded the preparation and the quick response of local authorities.
"I think we may have gotten lucky. At least this time, a little bit," he said.
"It's really in the preparation. The LGUs did a good job in explaining what the situation was, what needs to be done, anong plano," he added.
He also attributed the quick preemptive evacuation to the coordination between the national and local governments.
But he told his Cabinet not to stand down just yet, as the devastation caused by Karding is "not yet over."
In a press briefing, Marcos told reporters that he immediately contacted officials from the NDRRMC, DILG, DSWD, and DOST to monitor developments on Karding right after he arrived from the United States Sunday.
" So far, naging effective ang response. Binabantayan pa rin natin," Marcos said.
He then immediately went on an aerial inspection on Bulacan and Nueva Ecija.
"After our aerial inspection today, we found some areas that are still inundated with water. Nueva Ecija and Aurora are without power. We are sending gensets now," he said in his tweet.
"But generally, the damage to public and private infrastructure is manageable. Government services are almost at full function. Main road thoroughfares are passable, communication is up and running," Marcos added.
—with report from Sherrie Ann Torres, ABS-CBN News