Philippines: ‘We’re unable to know the full extent of how many people are isolated and unreached, I would say it’s in the millions’Posted by Jim at Monday, November 11, 2013
By Nancy Snyderman, Harry Smith and F. Brinley Bruton
11 November 2013
TACLOBAN, Philippines (NBC News) – Aid workers and emergency officials warned that there had been no contact with many typhoon-hit parts of the Philippines more than three days after one of the most violent storms to ever make landfall slammed into the country.
Tacloban, a city of 200,000 people on the island of Leyte, lay in ruins with bodies littering the streets in the wake of Typhoon Haiyan. A civil defense official told NBC News on Monday that more than 56,000 homes had been destroyed on the island of Panay, with 83,000 others damaged.
But there was no word from many communities.
"What worries us is there are so many areas that we have no information from and when we have this silence this usually means that the damage is even worse," Joseph Curry, country representative for Catholic Relief Services, told TODAY.
“We’re unable to know the full extent of how many people are isolated and unreached, I would say it’s in the millions,” said Julien Anseau, an Asia region communications manager with ChildFund International.
Anseau said he is stationed in Cebu but trying to get to Ormoc in the province of Leyte, to join a ChildFund colleague in the search for a local partner organization team of 15 — whom they haven’t heard from since Friday.
“Ormoc and surrounding areas are equally as badly affected as Tacloban and no one has reached the other areas yet,” Anseau said.
The storm is estimated to have destroyed up to 80 percent of buildings in its path in the provinces of Samar and Leyte. [more]