TACLOBAN CITY — A 23-year-old man was drowned and 11,700 families were displaced when tropical depression “Samuel” dumped heavy rain and flooded 12 towns in Northern Samar and Eastern Samar on Wednesday(Nov.22).
Rescuers found the body of Ronel Quibal floating on the river at Barangay Magsaysay in Palapag town, Northern Samar, around 1:20 pm, about 21 hours after he was reported missing.
Quibal was swept by strong current while crossing the rampaging river aboard a motorcycle in Barangay Paysud, Palapag.
Seven towns in Northern Samar, including Palapag, were flooded, affecting 1,319 families, or 17,779 people, according to the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office which is headed by Rei Josiah Echano.
The other towns were Mapanas, Pambujan, San Roque, Gamay, Lope de Vega and San Isidro.
The evacuees sought refuge in public schools and barangay halls that were on high and safe ground.
There were landslides in Barangay Mirador, Mondragon town and Barangays Nipa and Maragano in Palapag but no immediate reports of casualties or damage.
In Eastern Samar, 10,398 families, or 40,601 people, fled rising waters in the towns of Oras, Arteche, Guiuan, San Julian and Sulat.
As many as 4,488 families, most of them living near riverbanks, were affected by the flood, said Mayor Vivienne Alvarez.
Many started heading home when the water subsided hours later.