710 classrooms destroyed by ‘Nona’
LEGAZPI CITY—Public schools in Bicol took the severest beating from Typhoon “Nona,” which destroyed hundreds of classrooms, accounting for P1.1 billion of the estimated P3.3 billion in losses that the region suffered from the storm, according to a report of the region’s disaster risk reduction and management council.
In the report made public on Monday, the council said damage to public infrastructure, like roads and bridges, was worth at least P298 million.
According to Ramon Abcede, regional director of the Department of Education (DepEd), at least 710 classrooms were destroyed while 1,199 others were damaged.
Among the provinces in Bicol, Sorsogon had the most destroyed classrooms at 534. Albay had 71; Masbate, 65; and Camarines Sur, 40, said Abcede.
The regional DepEd office said at least P77.6 million worth of school equipment, pieces of furniture, learning tools and computers were damaged.
The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority reported damage in its offices worth P7.2 million while the Commission on Higher Education said its offices suffered damage worth P980,000.
The Department of Public Works and Highways reported at least P220 million worth of damage to national roads, bridges, flood control and seawall projects across the region.
The Department of Agriculture (DA) reported four provinces suffered huge losses in agriculture worth at least P827 million with Sorsogon having the highest loss worth P351 million, followed by Masbate with P48.3 million, Albay with P7.1 million and Catanduanes with P7 million.
The DA report said Nona dealt a heavy blow to the income of at least 25,469 farmers tilling some 25,139 hectares of rice lands, 6,044 ha of corn and 4,611 ha planted with high-value crops.
The fishery sector also lost P39 million, the council report said.
Help to Sorsogon
The National Irrigation Administration reported that Nona destroyed P71 million worth of irrigation systems.
Albay, which prides itself with a good record in keeping casualties down during disasters, sent a relief mission to towns in Sorsogon that had been hit badly by Nona. With a report from Ma. April Mier, Inquirer Southern Luzon
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