Agriculture, infrastructure damage due to Ulysses reaches ₱10B

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, November 19) — Last week's Typhoon Ulysses caused damage and losses to infrastructure and agriculture in Luzon worth at around ₱10 billion, according to newly released estimates from the country's disaster management agency.

In a press briefing Thursday, National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council spokesperson Director Peter Galvez bared that agricultural losses have increased to ₱4 billion, while damage to infrastructure is now at ₱6.1 billion after Ulysses (international name: Vamco) ravaged large parts of Luzon.

On Wednesday, the NDRRMC stated in its situation report that agricultural damage in the regions of Ilocos, Cagayan Valley, Central Luzon, Calabarzon, Bicol, Cordillera Administration Region, and Metro Manila was at ₱2.89 billion. Of the ₱4-billion damage recorded in Thursday's report, Central Luzon and Cagayan Valley topped the list with ₱2.1 billion losses altogether.

From ₱5.7 billion on Wednesday, the ₱6-billion total damage to infrastructure recorded on Thursday placed Cagayan Valley with the largest losses of ₱2.3 billion.

Losses incurred by farmers and fisherfolk in the wake of the devastation caused by Ulysses and the earlier Typhoon Quinta and Super Typhoon Rolly have reached around ₱12.3 billion altogether, according to the latest data from the Operations Center of the Department of Agriculture’s Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Operations Center.

Meanwhile, at least 360 cities and municipalities in Bicol Region, Cagayan Valley, Central luzon, CALABARZON, Bicol Region, Eastern Visayas, Cordillera Administrative Region and Metro Manila still had no electricity as of Thursday; 51 were still suffering from poor internet connectivity, while 50 were still experiencing water interruption, Galvez said.

Galvez added that 65,222 houses were damaged by Ulysses, most of which were in CALABARZON.

President Rodrigo Duterte recently heeded the recommendation of the agency to put the entire Luzon under a state of calamity to help residents recover from the massive impact of the three typhoons that hit the island.

This move, according to Galvez, will hasten all rescue and rehabilitation efforts of the public and private sector, lower prices of basic goods, and make room for international humanitarian assistance.

"We reiterate that the state of calamity covers the typhoons that passed, beginning with Quinta, then with Rolly and Ulysses. All these typhoons combined really caused a lot of damage to infrastructure and agriculture," Galvez said.

Galvez noted that under a state of calamity, areas in Luzon that were less affected will be able to help those who are in greater need: "Makakapagtulung-tulungan sila (They will be able to help each other)."

Typhoon Quinta left at least 22 dead after exiting the country on October 27. This was followed by Super Typhoon Rolly, dubbed as the strongest typhoon to hit the country in 2020, which killed 25 after making four landfalls in Southern Luzon early November.

Ulysses surpassed these with at least 73 deaths, 24 injured and 19 missing due to heavy flooding in various provinces as of Thursday.