Marikina mayor: Air rescue needed as 'Ulysses' flood thousands of homes

Marikina mayor: Air rescue needed as 'Ulysses' flood thousands of homes
Residents carry their belongings as they make their way through a flooded street to shelter after Typhoon Vamco hit, in Marikina City, suburban Manila on November 12, 2020.
AFP / Ted Aljibe

MANILA, Philippines — Marikina Mayor Marcy Teodoro appealed for air rescue as the continued dumping of rains of Typhoon Ulysses submerged thousands of houses in the city.

Teodoro told TeleRadyo on Thursday morning said the city's disaster response team has deployed 50 rescue boats to rescue citizens but that these are still not enough.

“Due to the strong currents, we need motorized (boats) and weather permitting, air rescue is needed because our citizens are already on the roofs,” he explained in Filipino.

Marikina Public Information Office said that as of 11 a.m., the Marikna River water level was at 22.0 meters, higher than the 21.5 meters during Tropical Storm Ondoy in 2009.

Teodoro said they are coordinating with the Philippine Coast Guard, National Disaster Risk Reduction and the Philippine Air Force to request additional rescue equipment.

At least 40,000 homes flooded

The city mayor said they have already evacuated 5,000 families but around 40,000 households are either fully or partially submerged in water.

Teodoro said they are aiming for simultaneous rescue, and have clustered areas that are in immediate need of help.

“What we need is how to extract the people stranded on their roofs,” the mayor stressed, adding that they are also prioritizing Provident Village that was also hardly hit by Ondoy in 2009.

State weather bureau Pagasa in its 11 a.m. bulletin said the center of Ulysses emerged over the western seaboard of Zambales at 8:00 a.m. Thursday. It is expected to exit the Philippine Area of Responsibility on Friday morning.

Pagasa however said moderate to heavy with at times intense rains will persist over Metro Manila and several other provinces until the afternoon.  — Kristine Joy Patag

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