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Typhoon Phanfone - Dec 2019

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According to the Philippines Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) Typhoon Phanfone (known locally as Typhoon Ursula) made landfall at 4:45 PM (local time) on Tuesday, 24 December 2019, in Salcedo, Eastern Samar. PAGASA1 reports that Phanfone made landfall with maximum winds of 120 kilometers per hour (km/h) and gustiness of up to 150 km/h ... Strong winds, and storm surges are expected, and rainfall can cause flooding and trigger landslides, resulting in casualties, as well as damages to crops livelihoods, livestock, infrastructure and housing. There are reports of rough sea conditions along the eastern seaboards of the Philippines. Seas will also be rough in the inland waters of Southern Luzon and the Visayas and in the western seaboards of Southern Luzon on Wednesday afternoon. (IFRC, 24 Dec 2019)

There are two dead and four missing in Eastern Samar (15 reported by local media). On 26 December, the typhoon is located at 215 km west-northwest of Coron, Palawan. Phanfone is forecast to remain within the Philippine area by 27 December and be out by 28 December in the morning. The rain continues. (ECHO, 26 Dec 2019)

A total of 28 dead, 2 injured and 12 missing is reported (NDRRMC). During the onslaught of the typhoon a total of 147 cities / municipalities experienced a power outage (31 restored), five government facilities damaged and eight areas reported flooded in three municipalities. Biliran PLGU to declare the entire province of Biliran under the state of calamity. Initial reports at Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (PDRRMC) reports 1,050 families served in evacuation centres. (ECHO, 27 Dec 2019)

According to government reports, Typhoon Phanfone (locally known as Ursula) displaced 174,000 people and has affected 1.9 million people in over 2,300 barangays (villages). Over 65 per cent of the displaced took shelter in 602 evacuation centres, with more than 63,000 people staying with host families or in open areas. The heavy rains and high winds brought by Phanfone have damaged an estimated 378,000 houses, 400 schools, 100 public structures, and 32 health facilities. Government agencies are coordinating the response, distributing pre-positioned food, shelter kits, and relief assistance in affected regions. Priority needs are food, potable water, and shelter assistance to rebuild damaged houses. (OCHA, 30 Dec 2019)

As of 2 January 2020, the government reported 50 dead, 362 injured and 5 missing people in Regions Mimaropa, VI, VII, and VIII. A total of 2,431,821 people were affected in 2,702 barangays, of which 77,989 people are taking temporary shelter in 548 evacuation centers (ECs), while 55,918 people are served outside ECs. (Govt. of the Philippines, 2 Jan 2020)

As of 3 January, over 133,000 people are displaced, of whom 77,800 are taking shelter in 547 evacuation centres and over 55,000 staying with host families or open spaces. The number of displaced is lower than previously reported (145,000 people as of 31 December) as people are gradually returning home to repair their homes and recover from the effects of the typhoon. While classes are scheduled to resume on 6 January after the holiday break, over 440 schools have sustained damage in regions V, VI, VIII, MIMAROPA and CALABARZON, according to the latest National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) reports. Learning materials and school equipment that were washed away, and damage to roofing and electrical wiring in classrooms were due to the heavy to sometimes intense rains, strong winds, and storm surges which brought up to waist-deep flooding in some affected regions. (OCHA, 3 Jan 2020)

As of 5 January, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) reported 2,825,279 people are affected in 2,923 barangays. There are 71,675 people taking temporary shelter in 526 evacuation centers in Regions VI and VIII, and 56,577 people are currently staying with their relatives and/or friends. (Govt. of the Philippines, 5 Jan 2020)

A week onwards, and the figures continue to rise. Over 3,271,500 people have been affected by Typhoon Phanfone, across more than 3,060 barangays. Approximately 2,760 people are currently taking shelter in 85 evacuation centers in the region. It is estimated that around 34,165 people are staying with relatives and/or friends. Almost 507,000 houses were damaged in the storms. (Govt. of the Philippines, 12 Jan 2020)

Almost 3,299,000 people have been affected by Typhoon Phanfone across almost 3080 barangays, as of 18 January 2020. However, the number of people taking shelter in temporary evacuation centres has declined, with around 1,240 currently staying in approximately 25 of these centres. It is estimated that there are still around 31,700 people staying with family and friends as a result of the Typhoon. The number of damaged houses continues to rise, with 516,885 recorded as having suffered damage in the storms. (Govt. of the Philippines, 18 Jan 2020)

Despite the impact of Typhoon Phanfone, at the time of writing, only one family is still currently taking shelter at a temporary evacuation center in the aftermath of the storms. Nonetheless, an estimated 26,400 are still staying with family and friends. The Government of the Philippines provided more than ₱116,238,650 worth of assistance to the affected families. (Govt. of the Philippines, 29 Jan 2020).