Natonin SAR ends
11 STILL UNACCOUNTED
AFTER almost two weeks of Search and Retrieval (SAR) in Natonin, Mountain Province, operations were terminated today, November 9 according to Mayor Mateo Chiyawan.
Several groups have been at ground zero where a landslide occurred collapsing the building of the 2nd Engineering District Office of the Department of Public Works and Highways Cordillera at Sitio Hakrang, Barangay Banawel, during the onslaught of Typhoon Rosita.
“The official termiBENGUET
nation of SAR operations will commence this November 9. Yesterday, half of those engage in rescue and retrieval have left consisting of those coming from the army and Philippine national police while those who are left consists of volunteers. Other volunteers coming from the neighboring municipalities who have missing persons like Besao, Mountain Province and Aguinaldo and Mayoyao in Ifugao,” Chiyawan said in a radio interview.
At least 18 have already been retrieved from the landslide, two are still unidentified and 11 remain missing believed to have been swept by raging water by the rivers.
“On my part upon our analysis, there are around 70 to 80 percent tendency that some of the missing may have been swept away by the current along the river because most of the missing were believed to have been seen from the top of the building. Of the seven who were at the main building, only one individual who is a barangay secretary of Banawel is yet to be retrieved,” Chiyawan stated.
The search and retrieval operations will however continue with volunteers coming from the various municipalities.
Chiyawan added a ritual will be conducted at ground zero which is part of the cultural tradition at Natonin for those casualties of the landslide incident.
PCOO Assistant Secretary Marie Rafael Banaag traverses a landslide on her way to Natonin to personally reach out to the landslide affected area in Sitio Ha’rang, Barangay Banawel where more than 20 people were buried and washed out during typhoon Rosita. Banaag was a former mayor of the town.