Odette victims in need of water, food, hygiene kits: Coast Guard

Gillan Ropero, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 20 2021 09:44 AM | Updated as of Dec 20 2021 12:07 PM

An aerial survey from the Philippine Army’s 402nd brigade shows homes and other structures are left in ruin in the aftermath of Typhoon Odette on December 18, 2021 in Siargao Island. Photo courtesy of Cpt. Jonald Romorosa/402nd IB
An aerial survey from the Philippine Army’s 402nd brigade shows homes and other structures are left in ruin in the aftermath of Typhoon Odette on December 18, 2021 in Siargao Island. Photo courtesy of Cpt. Jonald Romorosa/402nd IB

MANILA - Victims of Typhoon Odette are in need of water, ready to eat food, and hygiene kits, the Philippine Coast Guard said Monday as it mobilized all vessels for relief operations.

BRP Sindangan left early Monday to bring assistance to Siargao, said Commodore Armand Balilo, spokesperson of the PCG.

"I'm sure nandun na rin ang barko sa Siargao to bring some relief goods and some equipment. Kung meron pang turista na nastranded, kukunin na rin namin," he told ANC's Headstart.

(I'm sure the ship has arrived in Siargao to bring some relief goods and some equipment. If some tourists remain stranded, we will also transport them.)

Twenty-one tourists were stranded in Siargao following the typhoon's wrath but some were able to leave the island Sunday as vessels were allowed to sail, Balilo said.

"Tumatawag yan kahapon. Safe naman sila. As we speak, kanina parang yung report sa'min nagsimula nang magsi-alisan kahapon because meron nang mga barkong nakalayag," he said.

(They were calling us yesterday, they're safe. Earlier it was reported to us that they began to leave the island yesterday as some boats were allowed to sail.)

"Nakita naman natin sa videos, hindi lang ng Coast Guard kung di ng Army, talagang nasira ang coastal communities dun sa Siargao."

(Coastal communities in Siargao were destroy, we saw it in videos of not just the Coast Guard but the Army.)

The Coast Guard on Sunday sent 2 ships to Mindanao and 1 in Visayas, the spokesperson said. Two vessels each are being prepared for Palawan and Western Visayas, he added.

The Armed Forces of the Philippines is also preparing to transport relief goods to Odette-ravaged provinces, according to spokesperson Col. Ramon Zagala. Those interested in sending goods can course it through the AFP’s Civil Military Coordination Center. It can be reached at 0917-884-6796, (02) 8911-6001 loc 6107, or afpcivilimilitarycoordcenter@gmail.com

PAGASA ISLAND, KALAYAAN ISLAND STATIONS 'WASHED OUT'

Even the Coast Guard's stations in Pagasa Island and Kalayaan Island were "washed out," Balilo said.

"Now we're looking at Palawan, pati 'yung Coast Guard stations sa Pagasa island reported na talagang washed out. Katatayo lang ng Coast Guard station sa Kalayaan. Kung 'yung station doon nasira, how much more 'yung ibang stations din doon?" he said.

(Now we're looking at Palawan, even the Coast Guard stations in Pagasa Island were reported to be washed out. The Station in Kalayaan had just been built. If the Coast Guard stations were destroyed, how much more the otehr stations?)

"Kailangan nating irebuild ang structures natin sa Pagasa because sabi mo nga it’s a symbol ng ating exercise of sovereignty sa area."

(We need to rebuild structures in Pagasa because as you said it's a symbol of our exercise of sovereignty in the area.)

Other PCG vessels were also diverted for relief operations, while private shipping companies may also volunteer to help distribute donations, according to Balilo.

The PCG is having difficulties in communications as all signals were down due to Odette's destruction, Balilo said.

"In fact 'yung Palawan very kokonti ang information na natatanggap namin on the ground. 'Yung missing vessels and fishing boats hindi namin makumpleto ang mga data," he said.

(In fact, we receive very little information on the ground in Palawan. We can't complete the data of missing vessels and fishing boats.)

"So basically, aside from of course limited din ang ating resources, ang communications talaga ang nakita naming problema dito and hopefully we can address that in the future."

(So basically, aside from our resources being limited, communications is really the problem and hopefully we can address that in the future.)

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