15 Apr 2004

Water distribution and supply remain top priority in typhoon-hit Yap

10:22 am on 15 April 2004

Distributing water to people and restoring water supply in typhoon-ravaged Yap state remains the top priority for the Federated States of Micronesia government and its disaster relief services.

Assessment teams are analysing damage after Typhoon Sudal battered the chain of atolls with severe winds, sometimes more than 200 kilometres an hour, over the Easter Weekend.

"A spokesman at the Yap Command Post, Tom Lute (pro: Loo-tee), says initial reports show over 90 percent of all structures and 90 percent of all food and cash crops have either suffered major damage or have been wiped out."

Furthermore, he says 90 percent of the island is still without water and electricity, while a similar percentage are without telephone communication.

The immediate priority has been providing potable water to the entire island. That's being handled right now. We're getting water shipments in from Guam and saipan and Palau and the islands around and we're having those sent out to the homeless shelters that have been set up around the island. I believe, as of right now, the main road is open to traffic. We can travel to all of the municipialities.