FOR a number of families in Mindanao, it would a bleak Christmas season as they would be in mourning for their loved ones after tropical storm ‘Vinta’ streaked through the entire island and brought death and destruction.
According to news reports, mudslides swallowed homes and swollen rivers swept away dwellings, killing more than 140 people as Vinta dumped heavy rains on the island. Those who lost their lives ignored warnings to evacuate their homes along riverbanks, coastlines and other danger zones, authorities said.
What this latest natural calamity undercires is the need for authorities to heighten efforts at disaster risk mitigation by identifying areas vulnerable to flooding, mudslides and landslides. and taking decisive steps to stop the high toll on lives and property that disasters bring.
We are one of the most disaster-prone countries in the world as we lie right smack on the path of typhoons spawned in the Pacific Ocean. While we cannot stop the 20 or so typhoons from battering the country every year, we can certainly minimize the death and destruction—as well the sorrow—they bring in their wake.