Bantayan Island has been utterly devastated by Super Typhoon Haiyan, also known as “Yolanda.” Reports from government authorities tell us that up to 90% of the existing structures on the island no longer have a roof. Homes and buildings constructed of native materials are completely obliterated. These structures make up the majority of the homes for the poor fishermen who live along the shore of Bantayan Island.
Our friend Joan Pasasadaba Nepangue, owner of Beach Placid Resort, updated us at about 11 pm that 12 of the cottages in her resort have been destroyed. We have seen pictures from the beach at Santa Fe, near the Pantalan which show substantial damage to the port offices and facilities.
Pictures from the town of Bantayan show massive damage to structures which have existed there for over 500 years, including the beloved Bantayan Church.
Relief efforts by the Philippine Red Cross are underway, while roads from Cebu city to Hagnaya remain blocked by fallen trees and debris.
Banelco has informed residents that electric service will not be restored for up to four months. Residents and resorts which have generators are producing their own electricity to charge cell phones, computers, and internet service to upload pictures of the massive destruction on Bantayan Island.
We are here in the United States meeting with church leaders to seek their help in bringing back to Bantayan Island the much needed food, water, and medical supplies that are currently needed. We will arrive on Bantayan Island soon and begin helping our friends on the island to clean up and rebuild their lives.
This web site for Bantayan Island will now begin posting pictures and updates of the conditions on the island as well as updates on families in the Barangays where your loved ones live.
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NEW PHOTOS OF SANTA FE Typhoon Yolanda Damage
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From the appearance of these photos from Santa Fe, the damage is mainly structural to the roofs of homes which were constructed of coco lumber with native covering. The walls and main structures of all concrete homes are intact. Perhaps this will encourage the building of steel roofs to replace the damage wooden roofs. Had these structures had steel framing and steel shingles, they would not have sustained the kind of damage we see here.
The reports of people “starving” seem to be an exaggeration. First, people do not starve to death in a few days. The average human being can endure several weeks without food. Water, however, is an absolute necessity every day. We have seen pictures of many chickens loose and running around, as well as chickens hanging from the carts of persons who are traveling. I would not, at this point, worry about any of your friends or relatives “starving.” The island still has a lot of food on it. What is greatly needed is rice and bottled water, which is being transported to the island at this moment.
The damage on Bantayan Island appears to be worse in Bantayan and Madridejos than in Santa Fe. It is the poor who live in native structures who have suffered the greatest harm and need help to rebuild some kind of shelter ASAP.
NEW PHOTOS OF BANTAYAN TOWN Typhoon Yolanda Damage
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Philippine officials now report that they expect the number of dead from Super Typhoon Yolanda to exceed 10,000. It is certain that the majority of those who have lost their lives will come from Tacloban where tidal surge is estimated at over 50 feet in some areas.
The dead on Bantayan Island should be less than 1,000, and those who perish on the island of Cebu at about 2,000.
If one of the dead is your loved one, then this is one too many. We all certainly grieve and are heartbroken over your personal loss. We love the people of Bantayan Island and sincerely pray that the Lord has preserved many lives through this tragedy.
The good news is that we already see rebuilding and clean up taking place on Bantayan Island, as the Filipino people are a strong and resilient nation who are never defeated by any adversity. In two weeks or less, Bantayan Island will be cleaned up and look much different than it does today.
PICTURES OF TACLOBAN, PHILIPPINES, UTTERLY DEVASTATED
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