The United States and 10 other countries started offering their help to the Philippines currently suffering from Typhoon Hagupit. According to a Philippine military official, foreign countries already offered assistance in relief operations as the typhoon first landed in the East Visayan region.
Aside from the U.S., countries including China, Australia, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, Canada, Brunei, Indonesia, Thailand, and the U.K. also expressed their intention to extend their aid to the Philippines. Philippines' National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council Executive Director Alexander Pama confirmed that the assistance readily available includes personnel, resources and relief goods.
The agency said that it is currently assessing the damages based on protocols and policies to ensure that the assistance will be provided to those who really needed it.
Currently, the super-typhoon already displaced more than a million Filipinos and killed at least two. Typhoon Hagupit is now on its way to its third landfall heading to Northern Mindoro and passing the Philippines' capital. Weather forecasts warned that the storm will have five landfalls before it exits the country on Thursday.
Hagupit vs Haiyan
Typhoon Hagupit is reported to be weaker in comparison with last year's typhoon Haiyan that killed over 7,300 people and displaced millions of Filipinos in the Eastern Visayas region and left billions worth of damage to the country in the South East. However, Hagupit's sluggish tread in the country has resulted to more affected areas and severe flooding in some locations.
On its third landfall, the storm continued to weaken sustaining a speed of 87 miles per hour and wind gusts of 105 mph. The typhoon also hit the province of Tacloban, Leyte, which suffered severe damage last year. Traumatized residents already sought refuge in evacuation centers set up by local government units. Some of them said that the current storm is not as violent as Typhoon Haiyan and the country is more prepared, equipped with the lessons learned from the past disaster.
U.S. humanitarian response
The U.S. is one of the first countries to offer Philippines help during the devastating typhoon Haiyan last year. The country donated more than $37 million worth of food and relief goods to those who were affected by the typhoon. Moreover, the U.S. military assisted in the procurement of relief goods and rescue operations using their ships and aircrafts. U.S. personnel also helped in the rehabilitation of the key air and sea ports in Tacloban to ease the delivery of supplies and relief goods in the province.