That CNN resident meteorologist Mari Ramos quoted its findings in the course of reporting on the passage of Typhoon “Glenda” (international name “Rammasun”) indicates that Project Noah (noah.dost.gov.ph) has become an invaluable resource. Here is an initiative that deserves all support and funding, providing as it does vital information intended to minimize the damage caused by natural disasters such as the typhoons that regularly visit the Philippines.
By Randy David
The good news is that Albay province, which has chronically stood on the path of countless devastating typhoons, registered zero casualty after Typhoon “Glenda.” The bad news is that in adjacent Quezon, Batangas, Laguna, and Cavite, 54 people lay dead in the wake of this killer typhoon, the great majority of them pinned inside their concrete homes by fallen trees and collapsing walls.
In the wake of Typhoon “Glenda,” the numbers are in, and they seem, well, in a sense, encouraging: 40 dead compared to 200 when Typhoon “Milenyo”—a storm of comparable strength—struck in 2006; zero deaths and zero major injuries in the City of Manila; likewise with Albay, which bore the brunt of the storm but reported zero casualties; and more than 400,000 people evacuated to higher grounds both in Metro Manila and in the provinces, with most residents cooperating fully this time and not taking lightly the government warnings to remove themselves from the path of disaster.
By Denis Murphy
Many of us lie awake these nights listening to the rain race across the city, wave after wave. We may be grateful for the dry homes we have. We may feel the hostility of the wind and rain and think of the poor people trying to get through the night in kariton hauled up on the sidewalks, or the people sleeping in doorways, allowed to do so by the security guards out of simple compassion, or the people in the shanties of the slums where mothers gather the children as close to them as possible to keep them dry and comforted.
Last Thursday, heavy rains fell on Metro Manila—and traffic ground to a standstill, again. For both believers and unbelievers, it was hell on earth, Dan Brown-style. Again. What made it worse, for a good many who expressed their outrage on social media, was the unhelpful attempts at perspective-setting by some well-meaning busybodies; one such comment noted that, at least, the flash floods went as quickly as they came.