50% of power restored in Tacloban

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Wednesday, December 4, 2013

MANILA (Updated) -- Almost a month after Super Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan), around 50 percent of power supply has already been restored in worst-hit Tacloban City in Leyte province.

The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) executive director Undersecretary Eduardo del Rosario said that based on the latest assessment by the Department of Energy (DOE), power supply in downtown Tacloban has been restored, particularly in government offices such as the city hall, the Eastern Visayas Medical Center, and the parish church.

Del Rosario noted that the Leyte Electric Cooperative (Leyeco) already replaced some 250 concrete electric posts located along main lines that were destroyed at the height of the typhoon.

"We are confident that the DOE will completely restore the power in the [Tacloban] City before Christmas," Del Rosario said.

He added that electric supply is also being restored in some parts of Western and Northern Samar.

The NDRRMC reported that a total of 1,959 transmission lines have been damaged by Yolanda, including the back bone transmission lines, steel poles and converter station.

Del Rosario added that aside from Tacloban City, power supply has also been restored in some parts of Western and Northern Samar but he noted that Eastern Samar is a different case due to the heavy damage it has sustained after the catastrophic incident.

The disaster bureau has calculated that damage sustained in the power sector can reach up to P 6.5 billion.

Energy Secretary Jericho Petilla earlier vowed to resign if power restoration in Tacloban will not happen before Christmas Day.

Meanwhile, the official number of fatalities still keeps on growing and is currently at 5,719, while at least 1,779 remain missing, and 26,000 others were injured.

More than 11 million people have been affected by the super typhoon.

The NDRRMC said that damage to agriculture and infrastructure was initially placed at P34 billion.

Yolanda made landfall on November 8, causing severe damage mostly in Eastern Visayas. (SFP/Sunnex)

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