Thursday, June 23, 2011

9 fishermen missing in Catanduanes

By Jorge Carino
ABS-CBN News, Thursday, June 23,2011

MANILA, Philippines – Nine fishermen have gone missing after sailing on 3 boats off Barangay San Vicente in Virac, Catanduanes Thursday morning.

Seven of the fishermen were identified as:

· Antonio Avila Baylon
· Nestor Tapit Mandazo
· Vicente Rodriguez Tapit
· Prospero Tabios
· Paquioto Tabus
· Rolando Sarmiento Tabor
· Denver Sta. Ines

The Office of Civil Defense (OCD) is tracking the joint efforts of local government units in Bicol, Philippine Navy and Philippine Coast Guard in searching for the fishermen.

OCD Acting Chief for Operations Melchito Castro said 10 fishermen were loaded on 3 boats but only one fisherman made it back to shore.

Islander aircrafts of the Philippine Navy will be utilized in the search and rescue effort as soon as weather allows flight.

Since Thursday morning, 13 domestic flights have been cancelled in Albay. Albay and Catanduanes are the provinces in the Eastern Seaboard that have been badly hit by Tropical Storm Falcon.

"Actually ang apektado ngayon ay dito sa Eastern Seaboard, especially dito sa may Albay, Catanduanes at binabantayan din natin itong Region 2, itong Cagayan Valley at Babuyan Island. Dahil itong bagyong si Falcon ay ‘yun ang tinatahak nito," said Castro.

Maritime navigation is also on hold, leaving people stranded in the ports of Tabaco, Pioduran and Rapu-Rapu in Albay.

Nine vessels were not allowed to leave ports, stranding 201 passengers and 19 vehicles in the three ports.

Pre-emptive evacuation was ordered by Governor Joey Salceda to all mayors in the province, while suspension of classes in all levels has been in effect since morning.

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