Typhoon Milenyon, also known internationally as Xangsane, have brought Metro Manila, including nearby provinces, down to its knees. Many people have suffered the onslaught of Milenyo due to its unexpected strength. Many were caught by surprise as the strong wind surge Milenyo brought torn down many billboards, uprooted countless trees and even overturned trucks. The damage was so devastating that even I could not believe my own eyes.
I had witnessed super Typhoon Rosing 11 years ago and Milenyo is not really that strong compared to it, yet, Milenyo managed to cause wide scale damage comparable to Rosing not only in Metro Manila but also in the provinces that Milenyo passed by.
I have counted the battered billboards from Alabang to Makati via SLEX. Along the west service road, I counted 15 and 8 along east service road. Most billboards were twisted, mangled and toppled like scrap metals ready for junk shop. It is disturbing how these billboards caused structural damages to the nearby buildings and houses. Some houses were flattened while the stronger buildings survived. The sight of the billboard which used to advertise Pancake house in the middle of Skyway-EDSA-Magallanes is just stunning — in a dreadful way. Everytime I look at it, I get chills down my spine. Most of the big trees in Filinvest Alabang seemed to be cut down to serve as firewood. It\’s a pity that many trees didn\’t survive Milenyo. It\’s also NOT typical to see flying corrugated iron roof in our place but I saw several taking off from our neighbor\’s house.
Apart from its immediate effect such as suspension of classes and work, cancellation of flight and sea travel, Milenyo also caused blackout in Luzon. Fallen trees, posts and billboards contributed much of the power disruption. Our area was unlucky because we didn\’t have electricity for 4 whole days. It was a torture and test of patience.
Some lessons and revelations that I learned from Milenyo:
- Huge billboards along the road or near buildings are VERY dangerous especially with the tarpaulin or canvass on it.
- Having a fully-charged cellphone and spare battery helps a lot in times of calamity
- Battery-powered radios are cool
- My office is my second home. Thanks to the generator.
- Scrabble is the best family game to waste your time on
- My PC is useless without electricity (duh!)
- Without electricity, I go to bed 3 to 5 hours earlier