PNoy's chopper makes emergency landing
MANILA, Philippines (UPDATE 2) – A helicopter carrying Philippine President Benigno Aquino III made an emergency landing at a portion of Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway (SCTEx) Friday morning after visibility dropped.
Initial reports said bad weather forced 5 helicopters carrying the President and other Cabinet officials to make an emergency landing.
Presidential Communications Secretary Ricky Carandang said rain suddenly fell at 9 a.m., forcing them to land.
"We landed on a small portion of the SCTex near San Miguel (near Tarlac, Tarlac). We parked in an area where cars don't pass. No traffic was disrupted," he told ANC.
He added: "Visibility is very poor. We're on our way to our first stop, which is Paniqui. We are all safe, all in good shape."
Former Akbayan representative Risa Hontiveros, who accompanied the President, also posted the following photo on her Twitter account.
She tweeted: "The low cloud cover w/c made an early temporary landing necessary at d end of SCTEX."
Accompanying the President were Public Works Secretary Rogelio Singson, Social Welfare Secretary Dinky Soliman, Interior and Local Government Secretary Jesse Robredo, Energy Secretary Rene Almendras, Aurora Rep. Sonny Angara, TESDA chief Joel Villanueva and Hontiveros.
The President was reportedly on his way to visit flood-affected residents in an evacuation center in Barangay Apulid, Paniqui, Tarlac. He will be visiting a number of provinces in Central Luzon today to check on the damage brought by monsoon rains, and deliver relief goods to thousands of affected families. – With reports from Willard Cheng, ABS-CBN News; Junry Hidalgo, dzMM, and ANC