Just when I announced on my Facebook account Saturday night that we survived from the wrath of super typhoon Haiyan (Philippine name: Yolanda), I don’t have much energy left to tell the entire story. Needless to say, it was traumatizing and we need to rebuild our courage and strength after the havoc caused by that super typhoon.
We’re recovering now and I’m glad I can already think well so I’d be sharing with you the entire experience since Thursday, a day before Haiyan smashed the entire Tacloban City and other provinces in the Central Visayas, Philippines.
November 7, Thursday: 12-Hours before Landfall
Around 5-6PM, State weather agency, Pagasa, declared Tacloban City under Public Storm Warning Signal (PSWS) #4. Broadcasted on local TV channel, there was already a forced evacuation of the people in Palo Leyte, a town just 2km from its shore line. Palo is 6.2km from my location or 12km from the main downtown of Tacloban.
Many locales are also moving in to the city’s Astrodome as preemptive evacuation. The “Astro” as the people of Tacloban call it, is around 3km from my location via the Calanipawan road.
We went there before the typhoon and it looked firm and sound against the wind gusts.
Because it’s just few meters from the shore line and we feared for a fierce storm surge, we just stayed in our apartment. Around 8PM, light to moderate rains started to pour in and it continued through the evening.
Video: Super-Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda in Tacloban City, Philippines – November 7, 2013, 10PM
November 8, Friday: Expected Landfall at 6AM
At 1AM, the wind gust was getting stronger, and I decided not to sleep so I could at least monitor the typhoon and just watched my wife and 1 year old daughter, Sirri, asleep. Still had a time to eat a bar of chocolate, which obviously the rest of it and other foods we prepped were blown away the next hours.
At exactly 3AM, state weather agency Pagasa released 2AM forecast of the eye of the typhoon, which was at 135km SE of Guiuan Eastern Samar. Because that super typhoon was huge enough, about 600km in diameter, this was how it looked through the MTSAT.
Wind gusts became more violent even so when the Eye of Haiyan was forcasted less than 100km SE of Guiuan, Eastern Samar at around 4-4:30AM.
At exactly 4:35AM, the power was out twice in our area, but I was certain no black out yet as my cousin near Marasbaras, Tacloban confirmed it. Total black out probably happened around 5:30AM, the time when mobile communication lines went down as well. We’ve got no signal in all networks and we presumed the eye of the typhoon was already in our location. I was still able to capture videos from the second floor of the apartment, watching another house across, being ripped off into pieces.
The wind just became more furious past 6AM.
Around 6:30AM, we need to close the windows and doors upstairs as the wind started battering our roof. I was still able to capture videos downstairs, not until when the flood water started to come in.
Click Next Below to Read: The Wrath We Couldn’t Imagine