As soon as I woke up last Sunday, I watched videos of friends in Bicol uploaded in FB showing strong rains with howling winds. A day after the storm, we now rush to assess the damage wrought by Super Typhoon Rolly, the strongest storm in the world this year with peak winds of up to 195 mph. The typhoon was comparable to Super Typhoon Haiyan in 2013 which killed some 6,000 people.
Typhoon Rolly dodged Metro Manila. But there were cities like ours that experienced power outage for hours last Sunday. We survived the calamity but what do we do after a typhoon?
Here are 10 things to do after a typhoon.
1. Thoroughly check your home
Hole in the roof? Shattered glass windows? Damaged doors? Busted lights? Go around your entire home and check each electrical outlet, window, and other infrastructure.
2. Check the safety of families and friends outside of your home
How are your parents if they are not living with you? What about your brothers and sisters? Are they okay? They are just a phone call away; they might need help.
3. Continue monitoring weather updates
Just as Typhoon Rolly entered the Philippine area of responsibility last Sunday, another storm – Typhoon Siony – joined Rolly. At this writing, Typhoon Siony is still hovering our country. Source news on all available media channels to always be prepared.
4. Check electrical wires or electrical outlet
Some outdoor electrical outlets may have been submerged in water. Call a licensed electrician before using the electrical outlet.
5. Check your food
If there was power outage for hours, food may have been spoiled. Double check meat and seafood before cooking them.
6. Participate in clean-up activities
Help in the community clean-up. Dispose containers that may be breeding ground for mosquitoes. Dengue is also common nowadays. Watch out for broken trees and structures in your community.
7. Take photos of damaged properties that are covered by insurance.
Acts of Nature is usually covered in insurance policies. Check your policy. It is important to document damage to the house due to a calamity. Consult with your insurance agent immediately if you need to file an insurance claim.
8. Beware of dangerous animals like snakes
When a storm moves into an area that brings heavy rain, underground dens and burrowed tunnels that serve as the snake’s home are filled with water which drives them to leave their den and seek dry, safe shelter. This shelter will usually take the form of a home, shed, barn, or other man-made dwellings. A snake will also take shelter under large piles of debris left behind by a damaging storm. So be careful.
9. Keep dry and warm
Rain continues to pour in many areas even after Typhoon Rolly already left the country. Do not go out of your house if there is no immediate need. Stay dry and warm. Having cough and colds during the pandemic will cause undue worry.
10. Help our kababayans in need
We are fortunate not to experience the wrath of Typhoon Rolly. The least that we could do is to help our countrymen in Bicol and Catanduanes. Any amount will go a long way in their recovery from this calamity. My family coursed our help to the Office of Vice President Leni Robredo whose team was the first to respond to Bicol yesterday.
The Philippines has survived numerous calamities in the past. This will soon be part of our history. Just keep the faith that all these will soon pass.