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  1. #1
    Moderator shawn alladio's Avatar
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    Jet Skiers in Phillipines conduct rescues during floods

    Mejica and the members of the Iloilo Watercraft Association in the Phillipines deployed their personal watercraft to rescue citizens on rooftops as the flood water rose...
    Jet skiers help rescue Iloilo residents from floods
    By Nestor P. Burgos Jr.
    Visayas Bureau
    First Posted 23:24:00 06/22/2008
    Close this ILOILO CITY -- For the past five years Rosendo Mejica II would often have fun with friends during most weekends jet skiing on the waters of Iloilo.
    But last Saturday, Mejica and his buddies found themselves on their jet skis surfing not the sea but the flooded streets of Iloilo City and trying to pick up as many victims of the storm who were stranded on rooftops and trees.
    "This is the first time that we tried this out because we wanted to help," Mejica told the Philippine Daily Inquirer.
    Ten of them, all members of the Iloilo Watercraft Association, met around 11 a.m. on Saturday after they heard calls for owners of rubber boats and jet skis to help rescue residents trapped on rooftops who were trying to escape from rising waters.
    The association's members are all professionals and businessman. Mejica is publisher of the community newspaper The News Today and owner of the Makinaugalingon Printing Press.
    The group proceeded to the flooded areas in Jaro District around 2 p.m. with their jet skis in trailers attached to their vehicles.
    Six of them were deployed near Barangay Tabuc Suba while the four others proceeded to the Ledesco subdivision area.
    The group found themselves confronted by strong currents as they maneuvered through debris and vehicles stranded in the streets.
    "We saw water all over with pockets of rooftops. Many of the victims were crying and pleading for us to come to them," said Mejica.
    Mejica said he and his friend Al Estrella managed to pick up "only three" victims from a rooftop of a house near the Angelicum School.
    Estrella rode with Mejica and assisted the victims in getting on Mejica's red 215-horse power jet ski. They first plucked out the two women on the roof and returned for their male companion.
    Mejica said could not remember the names of those they rescued. "It was confusing and there were many others who wanted to be helped."
    But he said they decided to call it a day three hours later because it was becoming too dangerous. "We saw pumpboats that attempted to reach the flooded areas but were swept away."
    One of their friends, Oliver Abanilla, fell from his jet ski and sought refuge in one of the houses where he was stranded until early Sunday.
    "We were worried about him because we have no training and experience on rescue efforts," said Mejica.
    His jet ski had scratches all over probably after repeatedly hitting structures and other objects under the water. Those of his friends were also damaged.
    "We tried it because we wanted to help. We can only do as much but it felt good being able to help," said Mejica.


  2. #2
    Moderator shawn alladio's Avatar
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    Floods globally claim more lives annually in drownings....



    City crisis management 'incapacitated', helpless

    By Maricar M. Calubiran


    City Crisis Management head Joe Papa admitted they were “incapacitated” and caught flat-footed when typhoon Frank angrily lashed Iloilo City last Saturday. The city has no resources to conduct rescue operations in flood stricken areas specifically in Jaro district.
    Papa said they have enough personnel to conduct rescue operations on families trapped in their houses but they lack equipment. The city has only one rubber boat which was also not in good condition during the typhoon. No prior advisory was raised Friday when the typhoon signal number 3 was raised in northern Iloilo.

    He apologized for the shortcomings of the city crisis management as it became helpless at the height of the disaster. Papa himself admitted he was helpless as his family was also trapped by floodwaters in their house in Barangay Camalig, Jaro. He wanted to rescue his family but could not do anything.
    Papa said they tried to borrow equipment from private groups. At the height of the typhoon, rescue operations failed because of the strong current of water.
    The affected families have to stay on the roof of their houses to save themselves from the floodwaters coming from the mountains. Some of the subdivisions hardly hit by flood waters that reached up to the second floor of houses are those in Petalsville, Alta Tierra and Bankers Village in Jaro.
    They have to bear hunger and cold for almost a day as they waited for help from government or rescue groups.
    The rescue operations for affected individuals was hampered because of the lack of equipment. Meanwhile, it was observed that rescue groups which were very ubiquitous in previous calamities became unheard of. There is a conflict between the rescue groups in the city. The conflict emanated in last year's selection of the best rescue group.
    With the lack of rescue facilities, several individuals owning jet skis heeded the call of the Crisis Management and the Regional Disaster Coordinating Council (RDCC) to help in the rescue operations.
    Chief Supt. Isagani Cuevas, Police Regional Office chief, said they rented two big pump boats to help in the rescue operation Saturday. However, the pump boats conked out before reaching the affected areas.
    Yesterday, a military helicopter tried to initiate rescue operations but returned to the ground due to bad weather. There are still families who waited for assistance Sunday morning.
    Cuevas also asked for the help of Philippine Ports Authority (PPA), Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) and Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH). PPA and Maritime were tasked to coordinate with shipping companies for the provision of rubber boats.
    The regional director said he has been waiting for the response of the public works department for a back hoe and payloader which could be used in the rescue operations. He also called for different contractors to make their equipment available for rescue operations.
    City crisis management 'incapacitated', helpless

  3. #3
    mitch ochoa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shawn alladio View Post
    Mejica and the members of the Iloilo Watercraft Association in the Phillipines deployed their personal watercraft to rescue citizens on rooftops as the flood water rose...
    Jet skiers help rescue Iloilo residents from floods
    Big kudos to Sendo and the IWA boys.

  4. #4
    Moderator shawn alladio's Avatar
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    Flood victims rescued by pals on jet skis

    By Nestor P. Burgos Jr.
    Visayas Bureau
    First Posted 02:38:00 06/23/2008

    ILOILO CITY—For the past five years, Rosendo Mejica II and his friends had been spending weekends skimming over the waters of Iloilo on jet skis.
    But on Saturday, Mejica and his buddies headed for the flooded streets of this city and got on their jet skis to rescue people stranded on rooftops and tree branches.
    Typhoon “Frank” (international codename: Fengshen) spawned floodwaters in most parts of the country, forcing people to seek higher ground.
    “This is our first time to do this. We just wanted to help,” Mejica told the Philippine Daily Inquirer (parent company of INQUIRER.net).
    Ten of them, all members of the Iloilo Watercraft Association, met at around 11 a.m. on a wet and windy Saturday after hearing calls for owners of rubber boats and jet skis to help rescue residents trapped on rooftops.
    Rising floodwaters
    The association members are all professionals and businessmen. Mejica is publisher of the community newspaper The News Today and owner of Makinaugalingon Printing Press.
    They loaded their jet skis on trailers attached to their vehicles and proceeded to the flooded areas in Jaro District at around 2 p.m.
    Six members were deployed to an area near Barangay Tabuc Suba, while four others proceeded to the Ledesco subdivision area.
    Water everywhere
    They encountered strong currents as they maneuvered their skis past floating debris and stranded vehicles.
    “There was water everywhere … then there would be pockets of rooftops. Many of the victims were crying, pleading for us to rescue them,” narrated Mejica.
    He said he and his friend Al Estrella were able to reach three victims trapped on the rooftop of a house near the Angelicum School.
    Estrella rode with Mejica and assisted the victims in getting onto Mejica’s 215-horsepower jet ski. They were able to extract two women, brought them to safety and then returned for their male companion.
    Strong currents
    Mejica said he could not remember the names of the people and how many they were able to rescue.
    “It was confusing. There were many others who needed help but we couldn’t reach them,” he said.
    After three hours, Mejica and his group decided to call it a day because the current was getting stronger.
    “We saw pump boats trying to reach the flooded areas and they were being swept away,” he said.
    Glad to help
    One of their friends, Oliver Abanilla, fell off his jet ski and sought refuge on a rooftop where he was stranded until early yesterday.
    “We were worried about him [but we couldn’t do anything] because we have no experience in water rescue training,” said Mejica, whose jet ski was badly scratched after repeatedly hitting structures and sharp objects in the water. His friends’ skis were also damaged.
    “We wanted to help more people, but we could only do so much. But it felt good being able to help,” he said.

    Flood victims rescued by pals on jet skis - INQUIRER.net, Philippine News for Filipinos

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