'Sendong' maintains strength

Posted at 12/17/11 12:18 AM

7 areas under storm signal number 2

MANILA, Philippines – Tropical storm “Sendong” continues its westward movement and was spotted 50 kilometers west-northwest of Malaybalay, Bukidnon as of 10 p.m. Friday, the state weather bureau PAGASA said.

Sendong has maintained its strength, still packing winds of 65 kilometers per hour (kph) and gustiness of 80 kph.

The storm made landfall in the vicinity of Hinatuan, Surigao del Sur at around 3 p.m. on Friday.

It is expected to exit the Philippine Area of Responsibility by Monday morning.

Storm signal number 2 remains hoisted over the following areas:

Misamis Oriental
Misamis Occidental
Camaguin Island
Lanao del Norte
Lanao del Sur
Zamboanga Provinces

Under storm signal number 1 are:

Southern Cebu
Negros Oriental
Southern Negros Occidental
Surigao Del Norte
Agusan del Norte
Agusan del Sur
Davao del Norte
Compostela Valley
North Cotabato


An 80-year-old woman identified as Hermogina Damuag drowned after raging floods swept several homes in Polanco and Dipolog City in Zamboanga del Norte.

Two others are reportedly missing.

Authorities said over 500 families from 8 barangays were affected by floods in Polanco and Dipolog City.

The effects of the storm were also felt in Tandang, Surigao, prompting authorities to cancel trips of several vessels.

Relief goods were also prepared.

Stranded passengers

In Sorsogon and Masbate, many were left stranded after ships were prevented from sailing due to the storm.

Trips bound for Bacolod were also cancelled.

Nearly 200 nursing students who were going to take the board exam in Iloilo were forced to stay after their trip was cancelled.

“Sana naman maka-biyahe na kami papuntang Iloilo kasi kung bukas pa talagang alanganin na,” said nursing board examinee Diana Mars Dojoles.

Some 295 passengers in Liloan port and 281 more in San Ricardo port in Leyte were also stranded due to the bad weather. -- Reports from Trini Velasco, ABS-CBN News Caraga; ANC