SEVENTY siege-displaced families consisting of 374 individuals were rendered homeless as a whirlwind destroyed 42 temporary shelters in a coastal village of Zamboanga city.

The whirlwind swept the coastal village of Taluksangay shortly after 6 p.m. Wednesday.

The whirlwind was followed by downpour coupled with thunderstorm and lightning. However, no one was reported killed or wounded during the incident.

Mayor Ma. Isabelle Climaco-Salazar has immediately ordered the City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO) to provide immediate relief assistance to the affected families.

City Hall Information Officer Belen Sheila Covarrubias said the relief assistance include family food packs and hot meals as well as mats. Additional relief goods were distributed Thursday.

She said the CSWDO is conducting assessment in preparation for the release of cash assistance to the affected families.

Covarrubias said the financial aid is to help alleviate the plight of the families affected by calamity, both natural and human-induced.

The whirlwind occurrence that swept across their community was sudden, a housewife said.

“I pulled my children into our house as the whirlwind sweeps across. The next thing I noticed was that the roof of our house was gone,” she said.

Taluksangay Village Councilor Adnan Abdurahim said the whirlwind has even torn apart some of the corrugated galvanized iron roofs of the affected houses in the area.

A whirlwind is a weather phenomenon in which a vortex of wind (a vertically oriented rotating column of air) forms due to instabilities and turbulence created by heating and flow (current) gradients. Whirlwinds occur all over the world and in any season.

Evelyn Las Marias of the CSWDO said most of the victims are temporarily staying with their relatives while others are staying in vacant bunkhouses.

The victims are among the families displaced during the 21-day September 2013 siege that were resettled to the village of Taluksangay.

Salazar visited Thursday the village of Taluksangay to see the extent of damage to properties caused by the whirlwind.