Quinta ravages agricultural crops in 2 Oriental Mindoro towns

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 27 2020 08:14 AM | Updated as of Oct 27 2020 10:03 AM

The remains of a house after Typhoon Quinta's wrath in Pola, Oriental Mindoro continue to be submerged in water on Monday. Thousands of villagers fled to safety as heavy rains and strong winds caused massive flooding and ripped off roofs, according to local officials. Erik De Castro, AP

MANILA - Typhoon Quinta's strong winds and torrential rains destroyed "almost 100 percent" of agricultural crops in two Oriental Mindoro towns, officials said Tuesday.

Quinta had left at least 2 dead and displaced some 150,000 in Luzon and parts of Visayas, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council earlier said.

The country's 17th storm this year destroyed an estimated P261 million in rice crops and some P253 million in banana crops in Pinamalayan town, said its Mayor Aristeo Baldos Jr., who cited initial assessment of damage.

"Malaking ektarya ng palayan namin ang nasira rito, almost 80 percent. Ang problema namin - ngayon pa lang kami nag-aani," he told ABS-CBN's Teleradyo.

(Quinta destroyed hectares of our rice fields, almost 80 percent. Our problem now is we were just about to harvest.)

Some 885 individuals who evacuated Monday have returned to their homes, Baldos said.

Quinta also destroyed nearly all banana and some coconut crops in Pola town, where it made its fifth and final landfall early Monday.

"Halos 100 percent po. Ubos po ang ating mga saging, marami rin pong mga niyog," Vice Mayor Leandro Panganiban Jr. said.

(Almost 100 percent. Almost no banana crop was left, many coconuts were also destroyed.)

"Kahit po ang mangingisda natin, ubos ang kanilang bangka. Talagang wasak lahat nung inikutan namin kahapon."

(Even our fishermen were affected, their boats were destroyed when we assessed Quinta's damage yesterday.)

Some fisheries also overflowed as the high tide and Quinta's heavy rains brought flooding, Panganiban said.

Both towns await the province's declaration of state of calamity for additional funds as they have realigned their disaster budget to COVID-19 response, officials said.

"Problema po namin ngayon itong aming pondo para sa relief operations sapagkat naubos na po nung panahon ng COVID at ito ay narealign na namin," Baldos said.

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The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council earlier said it has enough funds to provide assistance in the event of emergencies during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Meron pa naman. 'Yung ating NDRRMC fund 'yan ang standby fund ng national government. May 7 ahensya o departamento na merong quick response fund. Itong budget na ito ay pwede namang dagdagan ng DBM," he told ABS-CBN's Teleradyo.

(We still have funds. The NDRRMC fund is the standby fund of the national government, some 7 agencies have quick response fund and the DBM can augment this.)

"'Yung local government units sa'ting pagtitingin, base rin sa report ng DILG (Department of the Interior and Local Government), meron pa namang natitira sa kanilang local risk disaster management fund."

(Our local government units, based on the report of the DILG, still has disaster management fund left.)

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Quinta is forecast to leave the Philippine area of responsibly on Tuesday morning and head towards Vietnam.