Typhoon Odette leaves areas in S. Luzon, Visayas provinces devastated

Job Manahan, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 18 2021 12:44 PM | Updated as of Dec 18 2021 02:50 PM


MANILA (UPDATE)— Typhoon Odette (International name: Rai) inundated towns and several areas as it crossed the country's central regions this week, leaving trees uprooted, houses destroyed, and infrastructure wrecked.

In Cebu City, authorities reported that 4 fastcraft were sunk due to the storm. 

Emergency Operations Center Head Joel Garganera said piers and terminals in Cebu City seemed like a "war zone" after Odette toppled boats, and damaged ceilings and buildings due to its strong winds. 

Odette's winds, rains wreak havoc across Visayas, Mimaropa 1
Odette's winds, rains wreak havoc across Visayas, Mimaropa 2
Odette's winds, rains wreak havoc across Visayas, Mimaropa 3

Photos from Cebu City Emergency Operations Center

Photos from Cebu City Emergency Operations Center

Photos from Cebu City Emergency Operations Center

In Silago, Southern Leyte, houses were also destroyed, many of which were located in the villages of Salvacion, Hingatungan, Laguma, Sudmon, Tubaon and Poblacion District 2.

Silago's Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (MDRRMO) said no casualty has been reported. 

Strong waves also caused destruction in coastal residences, the local disaster office noted. 

Odette's winds, rains wreak havoc across Visayas, Mimaropa 4
Odette's winds, rains wreak havoc across Visayas, Mimaropa 5
Odette's winds, rains wreak havoc across Visayas, Mimaropa 6

Photo courtesy of Alfie Cruzada Almine

Photo courtesy of Alfie Cruzada Almine

Photo courtesy of Alfie Cruzada Almine

Power lines are still cut and communication is still difficult in the municipality, the MDRRMO said.

Southern Leyte Gov. Damian Mercado, in a public briefing, said they were "badly hit" by the typhoon, noting that it is difficult for them to gather data and the situation on the ground due to impassable roads and the difficulty to communicate. 

At least 3 have reportedly died in the province, but these are still being verified, Mercado said.

"So far, wala pa tayong communication dito ngayon. Talagang badly [hit] ang Southern Leyte, sobra," he added. 

(We still don't have a stable communication here. Southern Leyte was badly hit.)

While no municipality was flooded, the governor noted that coastal areas are deeply affected by Odette due to strong waves. All residents who evacuated have returned to their homes because the weather already improved. 

"Bumalik na silang lahat... wala na talaga, okay na ang weather dito. But of course, wala silang mabili na mga pagkain because ang mga stores dito ay closed as of now," the official explained, adding that they are prioritizing the distribution of medicine and water at the moment. 

(They have returned to their homes. The weather here is okay but of course they cannot buy food because the stores are closed.)

 MIMAROPA

In Calapan City, Oriental Mindoro, piers have already resumed operations, its Provincial Information Office said earlier in the day. 

There were no reported casualties, injuries, or missing so far in the city, but at least 400 families with over 1,700 individuals were preemptively evacuated. 

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Trips of roro vessels have been cancelled since Thursday due to bad weather. Because of this, around 1,000 passengers are stranded. 

In Palawan, Odette destroyed homes and uprooted trees, leaving them obstructing roads.

Odette's winds, rains wreak havoc across Visayas, Mimaropa 7
Odette's winds, rains wreak havoc across Visayas, Mimaropa 8
Odette's winds, rains wreak havoc across Visayas, Mimaropa 9

Photo courtesy of Dre dela Cruz

Photo courtesy of Dre dela Cruz

Photo courtesy of Dre dela Cruz

The Puerto Princesa City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office and the Palawan DRRMO said they continue their delivery of aid and relief goods to those affected.. 

Photo courtesy of Dre dela Cruz
Photo courtesy of Dre dela Cruz

No casualties have yet been reported by the Palawan local government units, as they continue assessment. 

Communication lines are still down, with only few people able to send messages and get calls through. 

Electricity and running water is yet to be restored in capital Puerto Princesa.

Odette has killed at least 12 people, the country's disaster response agency said. This figure is expected to increase as communication lines are restored and more reports of casualties come in from affected areas. 

It was last spotted 240 kilometers west northwest of Puerto Princesa City, Palawan with maximum sustained winds of up to 150 kilometers per hour and gustiness of up to 185 kph. 

— With reports from Wena Cos, Annie Perez, Ranulfo Ducdocan, Andrew Bernardo, Rex Ruta