Update - Death Count In Philippines Hits 1,500

By John M Disque

Edited By James Howell

Article Update 12/27/2011


The tragedy in the Philippines continues to haunt the country. The death toll continues to rise and is now almost 1,500. There many still missing and most of the dead now being recovered are beyond identifiable.


The search for the missing continues but is not a job anyone could handle. The sights and smells of mass decomposition is often gruesome and unbearable. Benito Ramos, of The Office Of Civil Defense, described a few of the scenes and used the words: crushed, decapitated, decomposed and unrecognizable.


To compound the tragedy even more, 60,000 people are homeless because of the storms and the Philippines are getting hit with even more rain. The Navy and Coast Guard have temporarily suspended diving missions because of the 0 visibility caused by the recent rain.


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Published in East TN News December 27, 2011




Update - Philippines Tragedy Claims 1,000 Lives

By John M Disque

Edited By James Howell

Article Update 12/20/11


The official death count keeps rising as the Philippine Islands attempt to get the situation under control. At this point the official count is at 957 and expected to go higher.


Mass grave sites have been set and planned, but some of the family members of the victims are opposing them. It’s understandable that they all deserve a proper ceremony and burial, but authorities are forced to take action and prevent the spread of disease. John Salva of World Vision said that signs of disease have already started appearing in the evacuation centers.


There’s more controversy that suggests that local government and disaster agencies were unprepared and didn’t do enough to caution and prepare the communities.

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Published in East TN News December 20, 2011




Update - Death-count In Philippines Rises Over 650

By John M Disque

Edited By James Howell

Article Update 12/19/11



According to the local Red Cross, the death count in the Philippines is now at 652 with over 800 still missing.


The challenge of managing all the death is a major issue and the country is in desperate need of body bags and lime.


Benito Ramos, head of the national disaster agency, is suggestingthe creation of mass gravesites to avoid the spread of disease and illness.


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Published In East TN News December 19, 2011




Typhoon in Philippines Kills 440 and Counting

By John M Disque

Edited By James Howell

Original Article 12/17/11


For the past week the warnings continued to come but most people took them lightly and were confident that the recent storms would miss the Philippine Islands.


The country is known for up to two-dozen typhoons a year and they always manage to get through with minimal damage. This time things were different.


Most people were asleep Friday night when river swells sent billions of gallons of water through the streets of the Philippines.  Entire villages were being swept out to sea and devastating flooding continues to take its toll.


Rescue units are in place via the military, the local police, volunteer units and the coast guard, but many of the units are currently limited and are being forced to wait until the river swells subside.


The death count is currently at 440 and will continue to rise as many people are unaccounted for and reported missing.


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Published in East TN News December 17, 2011


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