Philippines on blue alert, as typhoon Matmo approaching

Manila – Northern part of the Philippines is on blue alert status as Typhoon Matmo (local name Henry) remains in the Philippine Area of Responsibility, Presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said on Monday.

Under the blue alert status, half of the personnel of all regional and municipal disaster risk reduction management offices, regional civil defense offices, and other concerned government agencies in would-be affected areas should be at their posts to monitor the situation.

Lacierda said the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration is continuously monitoring the situation and disseminating weather bulletins and flood advisories, while the Department of Social Works and Development’s Municipal Disaster Response teams and Social Welfare Assistance and Municipal Development teams are on alert to be readily available for duty.

He noted that a 2.75-million-peso (about 63,179 U.S. dollars) fund has been set aside and a total of 5,715 family food packs have been readied for distribution to evacuation centers.

The Philippine Coast Guard meanwhile has issued warnings to fishermen to refrain from venturing into the sea, Lacierda said, adding that military and navy units in Tacloban are standing by for possible rescue operations. Source: Xinhua