Search and retrieval operations continue for TY Ompong missing victims in CAR

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet,  Sept. 18 (PIA) - -   Search and retrieval operations are underway  for a number of people  who are still missing when the old bunkhouse they  took refuge in   a village in  Itogon, Benguet  was  swept away by a landslide  during  Typhoon Ompong  over the weekend.


The municipality of Itogon, Benguet, particularly barangay Ucab, recorded the most casualties in a landslide incident at around 3pm, Saturday (September 15) with  34 dead  and 42 others missing.

Joint forces from government agencies and volunteer groups are involved in the retrieval operations.  Itogon Mayor Victorio Palangdan  and confirmed  by Presidential Spokeperson Harry Roque said they will not stop until all the missing are  accounted for.

Based on data  released  by  Department of Interior and Local Government Regional Director Marlo Iringan, there  were 54 persons dead, 49 missing, and 33 people injured in the region due to Ompong, as of 6am on Sept. 17.

For Baguio City, there were  nine casualties and five missing, Mountain Province has six dead and Kalinga reported one death.

Also in Benguet, the capital town of La Trinidad recorded three dead while Tuba reported one death and another missing.  Kabayan also reported one missing person.

Based on the Cordillera Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (CRDRRMC) report, majority of the incidents recorded during the onslaught of Typhoon Ompong were landslides, rock slides, flash floods, sinking areas, road slips or road washout, fallen trees and vegetation.

In terms of affected individuals, Department of Social Welfare and Development – Cordillera data show that as of 12 noon of Sept.17, there are 9,585 families with 36,631 persons affected.  All over the region, there were 62 totally damaged and 516 partially damaged houses.

The damages are expected to increase as reports from the provinces come in   with the ongoing restoration of power supply and communication lines.   

In terms of assistance, DSWD already reported the provision of around P3.65 million worth of assistance from their department.

The CRDRRMC has convened a meeting to plan out for the assessment of other damages in the sectors of agriculture and infrastructure, as well as to look into the immediate and needed assistance that the government can give.

Sec.  Roque led some   Cabinet members  and Benguet officials in a press briefing today at the provincial capitol  to  give updates to government responses on the typhoon aftermath and in assuring government support to typhoon victims and  in the rehabiltation of the Cordillera region. By Carlito C. Dar (JDP/CCD-PIA CAR)






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