TACLOBAN CITY – Local government officials in Eastern Samar have appealed for help as thousands of families continue to suffer the brunt of flooding days after Typhoon Ambo crossed the province.
In a video posted late Sunday night, Eastern Samar Governor Ben Evardone turned emotional as he recounted the ordeal of families in the northern towns of the province due to fierce winds and flash floods.
The provincial government reported that at least four people died in the towns of Oras and San Policarpo when the typhoon slammed the province on May 14. The weather disturbance also left at least 14 injured in the towns of Can-avid and San Policarpo.
The Regional Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council reported that until Sunday night, there were still over 23,000 residents staying in evacuation centers after the typhoon washed out their houses.
Evardone said the most affected towns are Dolores, Arteche, Oras, San Policarpo, Jipapad and Maslog. Flood water has soaked food stored by residents for the health crisis and natural calamities.
“The typhoon shattered their lives due to damaged houses and farms. Flash flood also washed out their farm animals. Let us help each other to make sure that no one will go hungry. We have to help them have hope and rise up again,” Evardone said in his message.
He also asked big companies in the country to come to Eastern Samar and help through their corporate social responsibility initiatives.
In another interview, Jipapad town Mayor Benjamin Ver said all the town’s 8,000 residents in 13 villages have been badly affected by the typhoon as flooding cut electricity, drinking water supply and communication.
“This is the strongest typhoon that hit our town here in Jipapad. We are now isolated since the bridge leading to our town has collapsed. We badly need help from the national government and from the private sector,” Ver said in a video interview posted on the local government's Facebook page.
The mayor said floodwater soaked 400 sacks of rice and assorted medicines intended for post-disaster relief operations. Jipapad is a 5th class town.
On May 14, the typhoon brought violent winds and heavy to intense rains over the northern portion of Samar and the southern portion of Northern Samar, according to the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration.
The typhoon packed maximum sustained winds of up to 155 kilometers per hour (kph) and gustiness of up to 255 kph.
Members of the provincial disaster risk reduction and management council have strongly recommended the declaration of a state of calamity in the entire Eastern Samar province. (PNA)