MANILA — President Benigno Aquino III has tasked Interior and Local Government Secretary Mar Roxas to lead the national government frontline team that will go to Borongan, Eastern Samar to prepare for eventualities vis-à-vis Typhoon Ruby.
According to the Field Bulletin No. 1 issued by the Office of the President Friday, Roxas was also directed “to ensure (that) the disaster preparations are in place, to monitor the situation, and to direct post disaster operations.”
Relatively, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin was ordered “to monitor the situation in the NDRRMC (National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council) headquarters.”
Gazmin was also directed “to manage all information necessary to ensure disaster protocols, preparation and response are properly and effectively coordinated.”
Typhoon Ruby entered the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) Thursday morning and is expected to make a landfall in Eastern Samar Sunday morning at a speed of about 215 kilometers per hour (kph) near the center and gustiness of 250 kph.
The government has been preparing for this cyclone for the past four days since the area where it is expected to make a landfall is Eastern Visayas, which was heavily destroyed by Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) in November 2013.
For instance, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has prepared Php 18-million worth of food packs and Php 270-million worth of other food and non-food items.
Meanwhile, the state weather bureau has placed 34 areas under storm signals early Friday.
The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) hoisted Typhoon Signal No. 1 over Catanduanes, Albay, Camarines Norte, Camarines Sur, Burias Island, Romblon, Capiz, Iloilo, Negros Oriental, Negros Occidental, the whole of Cebu except Cebu City, Siquijor, Bohol, Misamis Oriental, Agusan del Sur and Camiguin Island.
PAGASA raised Typhoon Signal No. 2 over Sorsogon, Ticao Island, Masbate, Northern Samar, Eastern Samar, Samar, Biliran, Leyte, Southern Leyte, Northern Cebu, Cebu City, Bantayan Island, Camotes Island, Surigao del Sur, Agusan del Norte, Surigao del Norte, Dinagat Island, and Siargao Island.