Typhoon Fengshen renamed Typhoon Frank in the Philippines wreaks havoc on Visayas

My first typhoon was a killer. A ferry carrying over 700 people sank, leaving more than 700 missing. Around 35 were rescued after swimming to a nearby island. They were the lucky few as they didn’t even know the island was there. They only stumbled upon it. It is though more could have been saved if the passengers had been told about the nearby Island.

Currently the hull of the ship can be seen sticking up from the sea as it sank in shallow water. A ship of this size was allowed to set sail even under a typhoon warning. It is a huge ship of more than 33,000 tons. It developed engine problems and finally lost its engines. It is not known if the storm caused the ship to loose its engines. Once they were out, the ship was dead in the water and it ran aground before being flipped by waves.

There has also been wide spread flooding. In one town near Bogo City, people were seen tying themselves to their roof tops in order to prevent the waters from washing them away. Seems like being washed away would be better choice than being held under water by their own ropes.

During the worst of the storm I made some notes that included “it is near midnight, at times all is calm, at other times the wind burst through the darkness like an explosion.” At the time I thought the storm was 6 hours away. Something must have happened though as that was the peak of the storm.

CNN weather reporter out of China reported that the storm had not followed forecast. i had already read that its actual path was off by an average of 350 nautical miles. This probably explains why we got so little warning.

Filipino are use to weathering out storms but there is little other choice. There isn’t much of a place to run too. From one island to another island. Not a lot of point. I guess you could try to predict an area that got hit by less storm, but the accuracy of doing so is questionable and travel during such times is probably unwise.

Still I think of the shanties some live in here. I remember what looked like a squatter’s home in Talisay next to the bay, right on the storm wall. I suspect most of that home is gone. The CR or comfort room was made of concrete but the rest was constructed of lean too’s and tin. There are reports of washed out roads and bridges in that area as well as one bridge being out. I remember of the fishermen homes along the road known as SRP in that area. A highway connecting Talisay to Cebu City. Iloilo province was hit very hard and the local government has sent out cries for help.

I have not yet been out to the fishing areas in Bogo City. I plan to do so tomorrow. I have been out, down to the wharf. The bay was much deeper than normal and in some places I can see further than I use too. Mostly due to damage to trees. I didn’t go today because Jessie has been ill but I will go tomorrow.

The banana groves in Bogo City are gone and power was out for two days. The beautiful banana grove behind our house is almost completely gone but I will enjoy watching how fast it grows back.

It was pretty cool, well by Philippines standard anyway. The high yesterday was around 25C or about 78F. When we walked down to the wharf it was pleasant there but the winds were blowing hard. We stayed there for about an hour. My cap ended up in the drink but someone was nice enough to fish it out for me and toss it back up to me. They were already swimming taking advantage of the deeper and cleaner water I suppose.

We stopped at Jollibee’s for cokes and stayed for about an hour and a half because they had an Air Conditioner. Jessie was feeling worse than I realized I guess. She shouldn’t have gone with me. I’m still a little intimidated by not being able to communicate with people but only one way to get over that, do it. It can be frustrating though, most Filipino do not understand my accent at all.

When we got home we were happy to find our power had just been restored. We got the TV going and the aircon running. But cable was still out on our TV as the cable providers main tower was still without power. We finally got Cable TV back this afternoon.

It would appear that my fears were justified. Some areas of the Philippines are reporting that it was the worst disaster they had ever encountered. IIoilo was particularly hard hit.

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