As another tropical storm is set to enter the country just days after Typhoon Pedring lashed Luzon, Senator Loren Legarda today called for national and local governments to bring disaster preparedness to an even heightened level and aim to have no casualties for the succeeding typhoons.
Legarda, Chair of the Senate Committee on Climate Change, noted the damages and casualties left by Typhoon Pedring.
Based on the latest situation report of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), initial cost of damages to 46 school buildings and crops amounted to more than Php100-million— at least Php84-million worth of damages in school buildings and more than Php16-million in agriculture.
Meanwhile, at least 18 deaths were recorded. Most of the victims were hit by fallen trees that were uprooted due to strong winds, while others died because of electrocution, drowning, and landslide.
“Based on the casualties recorded during Typhoon Pedring as opposed to Typhoon Ondoy, the level of disaster preparedness has evidently improved, from forecasting, early warning to evacuation of families in high-risk areas,” Legarda said.
“However, we should not content ourselves with the outcome and we must strive to target zero casualty as we increasingly gain the resources and political will needed to address the constant risks of disasters,” she stressed.
Legarda said that community preparations for disasters should include regular pruning of trees, dredging of canals and esteros, and the practice of segregating garbage.
The Senator also called on communities to heed disaster warnings to avoid accidents.
“National and local action must promote disaster prevention with ‘zero tolerance’ as a mindset and approach. On the other hand, citizens must do their part by paying attention to government warnings and community advisories, especially when there is a need to evacuate.”
“We will always have a chance to recover the economic damages and losses caused by disasters, but when a life is lost, we will never have a chance to get it back,” Legarda concluded.***
Office of Senator Loren Legarda
RM.209, Senate of the Philippines,
GSIS Bldg. Pasay City