On November 8, 2013
Super Typhoon Haiyan, also known as Yolanda, slammed into the central Philippines, affecting an estimated 10 million people, particularly in the city of Tacloban and the remote areas of Leyte and Eastern Samar provinces. Most of us have received phone calls, emails and messages from concerned family members and friends, wanting to know exactly what the situation is and how they can help. Currently communications have been disrupted and infrastructure has been severely damaged. The extent of the damage, personal injury and loss of life has yet to be fully ascertained. Official Philippine Government currently stand at 1,770 dead, but that number is certain to rise into the thousands in the coming days. The media has reported that an official in Tacloban estimated the death toll at 10,000. Two U.S. citizens have been confirmed killed. Extensive international relief operations to the Philippines has begun. U.S. Embassy Majuro continues to closely monitor the situation in the Philippines. In response to inquiries from concerned family members, the U.S. Embassy at Manila has reached out to US citizens in Leyte and Samar provinces to determine their status. The U.S. government is coordinating a response to the situation with the Philippine government. We continue to urge all U.S citizens in areas affected by Typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda to closely monitor local media and authorities for developments and warnings. More information on the current situation may be found at the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) website. Additional information on emergency situations in the Philippines is available on the Philippine Red Cross and the NDRRMC websites. The Department of State has activated the Typhoon Haiyan Response Call Center to handle inquiries about US citizens who may be present in the areas of the Philippines affected by Typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda. Please contact the Call Center at 888-407-4747 if calling from within the U.S. or 202-501-4444 if calling from any other location. For updates on Typhoon Yolanda/Haiyan relief efforts please check the U.S. Embassy Manila’s website at http://manila.usembassy.gov/ regularly. Over the course of the coming days and weeks, we will work together to find ways we as a community can help. You will hear more on this soon.