Evacuating Daanbantayan residents remember Yolanda
AJ de la Torre (The Freeman) - December 7, 2014 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - As strong winds and rain started to hit Daanbantayan town yesterday afternoon, families in evacuation centers felt a sense of fear as if it was ‘deja vu.’

Daanbantayan was one of the most battered areas in northern Cebu when super typhoon Yolanda wreaked havoc November 8 last year.

Andresa Tamondong, 60, shared that she has not even finished rebuilding her house which was destroyed by Yolanda, and now another storm is threatening to damage it.

Tamondong was among the many individuals staying in the main evacuation center of Daanbantayan, which also served as the command center for typhoon Ruby.

Tamondong, who sells food for a living, said the successive typhoons make it harder to bounce back. She said, though, that it would be unfair to just give up when so many have extended help to them.

So she brought with her in the evacuation center the food she sells and set up a mini store in one of the classrooms so she can still make a living even with the looming typhoon.

Daanbantayan Mayor Augusto Corro said there are at least 67 evacuation centers in the town to accommodate over 4,100 evacuees.

This is still excluding home-based evacuation centers, the mayor said, explaining that there are private individuals who housed residents in their own homes.

Corro disclosed that they allow and even welcome this since there are homes which are very sturdy and can protect the residents from the storm.

Other evacuations centers in the town, though, are already typhoon-resilient since schools, for example, which were destroyed by the typhoon, were rebuilt by government and non-government organizations with the use of stronger materials.

In Barangay Tapilon, families trooped to typhoon-resilient classrooms which were just turned over by the Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc. last October 21.

 Boyet de los Angeles and his live-in partner, Veronica Aresgado, said they were staying in the same room they stayed in when they were evacuated last year for Yolanda.

 Aresgado vividly remembers the scenario during last year’s super typhoon - children and women panicking as strong wind and rain battered the classrooms, trees falling down and glass-made windows shattering.

Aresgado, though still traumatized by Yolanda, said that with the new classrooms, they feel more secured.

Further, the municipal government of Daanbantayan assured that food was ready for the evacuees.

Corro said they have readied at least 600 rice packs enough for the prioritized residents, particularly those evacuated from danger zones like coastal barangays.

The mayor also said they were waiting for the satellite phone from the Provincial Capitol.

Corro raised the concern on the need for a satellite phone to Governor Hilario Davide III during the emergency full council meeting on Wednesday. 

Davide said they were still trying to acquire the satellite phone because not all telecommunication companies provide it. But Corro said they were told on Friday that they would be provided with one. –NSA (FREEMAN)

ANDRESA TAMONDONG ARESGADO BUT CORRO CORRO DAANBANTAYAN DAANBANTAYAN MAYOR AUGUSTO CORRO GOVERNOR HILARIO DAVIDE IN BARANGAY TAPILON PROVINCIAL CAPITOL RAMON ABOITIZ FOUNDATION INC YOLANDA
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