ILOILO CITY—One person is dead as typhoon Odette's "very, very strong winds" toppled trees and power lines in this city, Mayor Jerry Treñas said on Friday.
The city's first casualty due to Odette was a 54-year-old woman who "immediately passed away" after "bamboos fell on the roof of her house," Treñas told ANC's "Rundown."
"The problem in Iloilo is there are a lot of electrical posts that fell down, also fallen trees along the main roads and secondary roads," he said.
"Starting about 12 midnight, there was very, very strong winds and never in my 65 years and in my 30 years of public service have I experienced this very strong wind."
Treñas said the local government has sought the help of private companies and individuals with chainsaws to help clear debris on primary and secondary roads in the city.
"Most of the damage are in the private houses because their roof fell. Some of the houses were destroyed because of fallen trees. There are a lot of old trees here in Iloilo," the mayor said.
"I will need the help of people who have chainsaws to rapidly clear the roads."
As of 6 a.m., 4,586 individuals from 32 villages have evacuated to 63 centers, according to data from the local government.
"We have started accepting food stubs from private companies to be used in our evacuation centers," Treñas said.
"Our water district is providing clean water, potable water for the evacuation centers."
A family was taken to a COVID-19 quarantine facility last night after a boy reportedly experienced "fever and chills," he said.
The mayor has yet to clarify if the family was staying at an evacuation centers.
Several portions of the city were without electricity as the local energy distribution firm checked on toppled posts and power lines, the mayor added.
The city's COVID-19 vaccine storage facility is located in an area where power has been cut off since last night, Treñas said.
"We still have our generators running, and utility companies ensuring us that they will energize the areas a soon as possible so that we can make sure that our vaccine are still safe," he said.
The mayor has also ordered the temporary closure of banks and non-essential businesses "to ensure the safety of the personnel in these establishments."
As of 4 a.m., Odette was spotted 75 kilometers southwest of Iloilo City, according to state weather bureau PAGASA.
The storm weakened slightly as it moved over Panay Gulf, with maximum sustained winds of 155 kph with gustiness of up to 235 kph. It was moving westward at 35 kph.
PAGASA said Odette was expected to traverse the Sulu Sea and pass near the Cuyo or Cagayancillo archipelago on Friday noon before making landfall in Palawan in the afternoon.