Wednesday, July 14, 2010

"Basyang" Casualties Continue To Rise In the Bicol Region

CAMP ELIAS ANGELES, Pili, Camarines Sur – The number of victims of typhoon Basyang has continued to rise as more people called for help in finding for missing relatives today, a military report said.

As of 5:45pm today, the 9th Infantry Division Public Affairs Office has logged 21 rescued survivors, 24 missing people and 4 dead as Basyang left a trail of destruction to life and property in the Bicol Region.

The survivors include 13 people who were rescued in a coastal village of Pandan, Catanduanes and 8 additional survivors who were fished-off the waters near Butauanan Island in Siruma, Camarines Sur at around 3:30pm today.

Councilman Kagawad Alex Panotes identified the survivors as Rommel Gillen, Tonyi Jurado and 6 others who were identified through their nicknames as Ogak, Yepyep, Marvin, Nelson, Sonny and Darius.

Panotes said that Gillen and 9 other companions were on board a motorized banca named “Starship” owned by Edgar Jerusalem, from Jose Panganiban, Camarines Norte as they sailed the high seas last Monday.

Strong waves capsized their boats forcing them to abandon ship and swim for their lives towards the nearest island. One of them, Ramil Gillen, is reported missing while a certain Mar Gillen was pronounced dead by his rescuers.

Panotes also disclosed that the 8 remaining survivors could not tell their ordeal because they are suffering from hypothermia.

Mayor Sandy Ondis, town mayor of Siruma town also said that 4 other people went missing as of 3:00pm today. Ondis Identified them as Julian Collada, Lito Orita, Eddie Orita, and Sisong Dy, who are said to be from Lagonoy town in Camarines Sur.

Ondis also disclosed that he has difficulty retrieving the survivors from the island because of the ‘low tide’ which prevents his boat from coming nearer the location of the survivors.

He said, however, that Panotes has given first aid to the 8 survivors.

The death of Mar Gillen has brought the total number of dead caused by the typhoon to 4, all of them from Camarines Norte.

The 9th Infantry Division DRO platoon has been deployed to affected areas in Camarines Sur, Albay and Catanduanes to join in the search and rescue efforts.

Major General Ruperto Pabustan has placed all units on alert to provide immediate assistance to all victims of typhoon Basyang.

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