Via ABS-CBN News, a powerful story: 'Ghost of Tacloban' weeps, recalls typhoon horror. Excerpt:
Tacloban City Mayor Alfred Romualdez on Monday broke down in tears as he recalled how he and his family survived the onslaught of super typhoon Yolanda (international code name Haiyan) in Tacloban.
Speaking before the post-disaster assessment at the Senate, Romualdez said he had to climb to the roof of a building and hide as the typhoon destroyed his city and almost killed his family last November 8.
The mayor said that before the typhoon hit, the local government had already canceled classes for November 8 and started evacuating residents near the coastline.
He said the city engineering office also secured the roofs of school buildings since the structures could only withstand 160 kph winds and not the 240 kph winds brought by the super typhoon.
Romualdez said it was difficult to explain to residents what a storm surge is because they were more prepared for a possible tsunami.
“Most of our actual evacuations in the past were tsunami warnings and that was clearly understood by the public. It was difficult also for the city government to determine if you say storm surge of 4 meters, what is the strength? Is it going as far as 100 meters inland or going to go as far as a kilometer inland? We were aware of the height but we could not determine the strength,” he said.
He said that on the night of November 7, his government was still evacuating people who kept going back to their homes to get things before going to the city’s 29 evacuation shelters.