ZAMBOANGA CITY—At least 150 persons were rescued from several vessels that got caught in huge waves and strong winds brought by a low pressure area near coastal villages here and in Sulu.
Lt. Junior Grade Jomark Angue, commander of the Philippine Coast Guard here, said among those rescued at around 6 p.m. on Saturday in Barangay Mampang here were 80 passengers of ML Sher-ainie, which tried to sail from here to Tawi-Tawi and Sulu amid the bad weather.
The local office of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) said the weather disturbance started to develop as early as Friday.
“The boat operator did not heed the warning against sailing. The boat had engine problems while it was sailing from here. It beached when strong waves battered it,” Angue said.
At about the same time, Angue said 29 local tourists were also rescued from Sta. Cruz Island, where they were marooned by the bad weather.
“The weather was fine in the morning but changed at around noon. They were not able to leave the island. We sent troops to secure them a while ago and all have been accounted for and are safe,” Angue said.
He said earlier on Saturday that at least 20 persons also were plucked out of the sea near Sulu when the boat they were riding capsized.
The passengers and crew of ML Dayang, which left this city on Friday night, were all safe, Angue said.
In Barangay (village) Labuan here, village chair Noning Maravilla reported that 16 fisherfolk from Bohol aboard eight boats were also rescued amid huge waves—towering over 20 feet—on Saturday.
Maravilla said the fisherfolk had injuries and had to be brought to a medical facility for treatment.
“The fisherfolk said they were sailing from Tawi-Tawi when huge waves battered their boats,” he said. Julie Alipala, Inquirer Mindanao