Traveller, Photographer, Mountaineer, Human

Haiyan (Yolanda), Strongest Typhoon in Recorded History

This weekend, we were supposed to go to a beautiful island (Coron, Palawan).  However, Haiyan happened and all domestic flights (except those going north) and many international flights were cancelled.  Furthermore, Coron was in the path of this destructive typhoon.

Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda).  Image from Huffington post but I’m sure, it’s been shared in many other websites.

Days before Yolanda (international name – Haiyan) made landfall, many news sites, not only in the Philippines but also abroad, have been monitoring its progress as it is expected to be the strongest typhoon on the planet this year (many say this is the strongest typhoon in recorded history).

On the morning of the typhoon, news from Tacloban City, Leyte still came and the impact is really strong.

BYggM_8CUAI7cGz.jpg largeThese pictures are stills from news reports of ABS-CBN taken 30 minutes apart.  The first one at 6:58 in the morning where the rain and wind was strong but the streets are still passable.  Thirty minutes later, the streets are already heavily flooded with lots of debris.

News coverage indicates that the impact of the storm is similar to a tsunami with the sea (not waves) comes in to land at a smaller height bet repeatedly.  After that, all communications with Tacloban was cutoff as infrastructure was battered.

Yolanda swiftly cut a path of destruction over central Philippines and exited in one day (thankfully if left Saturday morning, the original forecast was that the typhoon will exit the Philippines on Sunday).  Its first landfall was made in Leyte (where Tacloban is) and continued westward.  Thankfully, it weakened a little as it made landfalls on the subsequent islands on its path.

Only today are news coming in that show the effect of the devastating typhoon.

Ted Failon, a reporter of ABS-CBN, who was in Leyte during the typhoon recounts his experiences after the typhoon with some video clips.  There is a clip of the news team helping a teenboy lift the body of his father from the wreckage of a house.  He also informed of an evacuation center that withstood the wrath of the wind but the storm surge of the sea (which reached several meters high) drowned the refugees inside and when they got there, some still have foam on their mouths.  Reports are coming in that at least a 100 people are dead (numbers will inevitably rise as reports come in from areas cutoff by the storm).

I wanted to post pictures of the devastation but this is already being reported by all the world’s major news network (CNN, BBC, etc.).

Such a sad day for the Philippines.

And as one CNN comment that went viral said, we will survive!  The Filipinos in the affected areas badly need help now but we will survive and rise again.

Time to get to the know the hardy Filipino people…unbelievably resilient, long suffering, good natured, uber friendly, loyal, ingenius, and a bunch of survivors.

At the end of the day the Filipinos will just shake off the dirt from their clothes and thongs and go about their business…and SMILE. They do not complain much, they will bear as long as they can.

Maybe this is why they were given the “privilege” of bearing the burden of the strongest typhoon ever recorded.

The indomitable human spirit at its finest.


2 responses

  1. I wish nothing but the very best to those affected. My thoughts and prayers are with them. It’s time to seriously think about global warming or climate change before it’s too late.

    November 10, 2013 at 2:35 am

    • Thank you. I was reading on why the typhoon got so strong and one of the reasons cited was the warm waters of the Pacific which extends further down the ocean than is normal. So as the planet warms up, we will see more of these supertyphoons coming.

      November 10, 2013 at 2:38 am

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