Fuel still critical issue on Tinian

THE two gas service stations on Tinian that were severely damaged by Super Typhoon Yutu were still not operational as of Monday, Mayor Joey Patrick San Nicolas said in a Facebook post.

But he said his office has been assured that Mobil Oil Marianas is working with the two retailers for the reopening of the service stations.

In a statement, San Nicolas said Tinian has been completely devastated by Yutu.

“Our people have lost their homes and many of their belongings. There is no running water, our stores have run out of drinking water, and our gas stations are currently inoperable.”

He said with the help of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the U.S. Coast Guard, and the American Red Cross, they have been able to distribute humanitarian daily rations and bottled water to residents.

The Commonwealth Utilities Corp., the Department of Public Safety and the Department of Fire and Emergency Medical Services were also able to distribute potable water from the local aquifer, he added.

However, he said, many residents have run out of fuel and cannot avail themselves of those services, or do so with great difficulty.

Still, the mayor said its municipal operations center is making headway in bringing essential resources back to the residents.

“We are currently working with local private sector partners to install a generator at the Maui Well Pump to kick-start city water distribution,” he said.

He said they are also working with the Department of Defense in partnership with FEMA to establish a reverse osmosis system to make more water available for Tinian residents.

The Tinian International Airport is open for humanitarian and military operations. Star Marianas Air Inc. is also open for reservation and the Tinian port is likewise open for daylight operations.

Mayor San Nicolas said they will continue to receive donations. Their priority items includes drinking and potable water, non-perishable food items, sanitary wipes (for bodily use), mosquito coils, tents or repellents, and flashlights with batteries.

“We are fortunate to have many people across the country reach out to the island of Tinian to lend a helping hand,” he said, as he thanked FEMA, the U.S. Air Force, the U.S. Coast Guard, and the military families of Guam for their efforts in collecting and transporting donations directly to Tinian.

“We have been devastated by typhoon but our spirit have not,” San Nicolas said, adding they are now in the process of recovering from typhoon.

“To the people of Tinian, please do not lose hope. There are many people around the world who desperately want to help. In the meantime, I and the municipal operations center are working day and night to bring our island back to normal. We are here for you, and we will get through this together. Hu sen guaiya hamyo todo, and Un Dangkulu na Si Yu’us Ma’ase.”

Category 5 Typhoon Yutu devastated Saipan and Tinian on Thursday, resulting in 133 injuries, several of whom required surgery, according to Nadine Deleon Guerrero, external affairs officer of the CNMI Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency.

 Deleon Guerrero said there was also one typhoon-related death.

 Variety learned that the 24-year-old woman took shelter in an abandoned building in Chalan Kanoa when the wall fell down, hitting her. Her body was recovered by DFEMS.

 On Tinian, Department of Public Safety resident director Mathew C. Masga said one injury was reported, a laceration to the head when a main door to a house was unhinged hitting the head of the victim.

(With Bryan Manabat)

Source: Marianas Variety :

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