The Super Typhoon Haiyan has affected the Philippines, triggering flooding,
destroying buildings and causing millions of people to take shelter.
Ramon Anquilan DU1UGZ of the Philippines Amateur Radio Association (PARA)
reports that the typhoon made landfall at about 4.40am local time today in
Guian Estern Samar, about 600 kilometres southeast of Manila, and neighbouring
provinces are affected.
Then it made second landfall over Dulag-Tolosa, Leyte with maximum sustained
winds of 235 kilometres per hour near the centre and gusting up to 275 kph.
Sadly the area of Bohol and Cebu, which suffered from the 7.2 magnitude earthquake
in October, are also along the typhoon’s path. Bohol was the epicentre of
the earthquake that killed 222 people, where at least 5,000 survivors still
living in tents.
There is no power in many areas including Masbate, Ticao Island, Southern
Sorsogon, Romblon, Northern Samar, Eastern Samar, Samar, Leyte, Southern
Leyte, Biliran, Northern Cebu, Cebu City, Bantayan, Camotes Islands, Northern
Negros Occidental, Capiz, Aklan, Antique, Iloilo, Guimaras and Dinagat Province.
Ramon DU1UGZ said, “HERO (Ham Emergency Radio Operator) have reported that
those along the typhoon path have shut down their radios as they wait out
for it to pass. In a few hours, we feel we should be hearing them again.”
Already there have been some 270 postings of emergency traffic. More reports
are expected. Earlier PARA called for the frequencies of 7.095 and 144.740
to be kept clear for emergency traffic.
Typhoon Haiyan, the world’s strongest this year, and some reports make it
potentially one of the most intense recorded.
The Philippines is battered by an average of 20 major storms or typhoons
each year. Typhoon Bopha left about 2,000 people dead or missing on Mindanao
Island in December 2012.
– Jim Linton VK3PC, Chairman IARU Region 3 Disaster Communications Committee.