Rescues continue along Texas-Louisiana border

admin   •   August 31, 2017   •   3109

The multi-agency rescue operation along the Texas-Louisiana border continued on Wednesday as storm Harvey made landfall once again, adding more rain after a record downpour that caused catastrophic flooding and paralyzed the city.

Videos of unprecedented rescue operations showed the vast destruction of the storm in the fourth largest city in the United States.

In Katy, Texas, the U.S. national guardsmen waded through waist-deep flood waters to rescue people and their pets.

An aerial video shot from a helicopter showed the vast extent of flood damage to areas in western and northwestern Houston where numerous structures were affected by a reservoir that had been released.

Meanwhile, agents from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Air and Marine Operations (AMO) took part in a large air transfer of Red Cross blood donations in Houston to deal with the impact of the storm.

More than 10,000 people affected by the hurricane have taken shelter at the George R. Brown Convention Center, the largest shelter in Houston.

The city government also had to open the Toyota center, home to the Houston Rockets, to accept more displaced residents.

“I haven’t heard anything on the flooding situation in our area right now. I hope it’s getting better but from what other people were saying the hurricane is turning back around too. So I’m not sure about it. I know by the time that I got out of there, it was up to my chest. It was pretty bad,” said Wesley, a local resident.

“I would like to say, mom, Mary Dan, I made it. I’m a survivor. I can’t call you right now because somebody stole my phone. But I made it. [I’m from the] Midwest. I should be there in like a couple of days,” said affected resident Anthony Dan.

Harvey is projected to weaken as it moves inland to the northeast, the National Hurricane Center said. — (REUTERS)

 

US reopens borders to foreign tourists after 20 months

Aileen Cerrudo   •   November 8, 2021

The United States (US) has reopened its land and air borders to fully vaccinated foreign visitors after a 20-month travel restriction due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The US will lift its travel ban on 30 countries but will still implement strict regulations for foreign individuals arriving in the country. Passengers will be required be tested within three days before travel and will have to present negative Covid-19 test results. Unvaccinated travelers, meanwhile, will be allowed entry to the US as long as it falls under ‘essential trips’.

US borders were closed after March 2020 to travelers from large parts of the world, including the Canada, Mexico, the European Union, Britain and China, India and Brazil. AAC

Over 2 million Pfizer vaccine shots arrive in PH

Robie de Guzman   •   November 1, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines has received another batch of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine doses, the National Task Force (NTF) against COVID-19 said Monday.

In a statement, the NTF said the shipment containing 2,098,980 Pfizer doses arrived on Sunday, Oct. 31.

The vaccine shots were donated by the United States government through the global initiative COVAX Facility, it added.

The NTF said United States facilitated the delivery of almost 28 million COVID-19 vaccine doses to the Philippines, which is aside from the more than 20 million doses directly donated by the US to the country.

“I can only encourage people in the Philippines to get vaccinated, it’s a safe, very effective vaccine and that’s the way our economy and our schools get back to normal,” U.S. Embassy in the Philippines Chargé d’Affaires Heather Variava was quoted as saying in the statement.

For his part, NTF Chief Implementer and vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez, Jr. thanked the US government, COVAX and the American people for the latest donation of COVID-19 vaccines.

The vaccine czar expressed optimism that the country will be able to increase its daily jab rate to 1 to 1.5 million doses, noting that the nationwide vaccination for children aged 12 to 17 will start on November 3.

“We are very confident that we can have 1 million or 1.5 million jabs a day. Before, we thought having 300 to 500 [thousand] jabs a day is impossible but right now, we’re able to achieve more or less 700,000 jabs a day.” Galvez said.

The newest vaccine shipment has brought the total vaccine deliveries for October to 34,887,870 doses, which surpassed projections that around 29.5 million doses would arrive this month.

To date, the Philippines has received a total of 106,212,460 COVID-19 vaccine doses from various manufacturers since February.

PH military receives medical supplies, equipment from US

Robie de Guzman   •   October 26, 2021

MANILA, Philippines —The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) has received various medical supplies and equipment worth P2,075,000 donated by the government of United States.

In a statement, the AFP said the donated items were handed over on October 25 in a ceremony led by chief of staff General Jose Faustino Jr. at the General Headquarters canopy area.

The donations were handed over by Mr. David Gamble, Acting Deputy Chief of Mission, of the U.S. Embassy in Manila.

Faustino was joined by Brigadier General Edgar Cardinoza, Commander of AFP Health Service Command (AFPHSC) and other senior military officers during the event.

“The AFP is grateful to the United States government for the donations which will surely enhance our capacity to afford our military personnel and their dependents the best health care services that we can provide,” Faustino said.

The U.S. government donated 30 Intensive Care Unit (ICU) beds and 10 sets of Personal Protective Equipment.

The AFP said these are intended to support the COVID19 response operations of the AFPHSC and are in line with the U.S. Government’s initiative to provide assistance to the Philippines in combatting the pandemic.

“This is just another step in our long partnership as treaty allies that has been going for 70 years. The ICU beds represent 30 of the 600 that the U.S. will be donating at P1.3 billion worth of donations,” Gamble said.

“We will ensure that these equipment and supplies will be fully utilized to fulfill not only our COVID19 response efforts, but more importantly for other medical needs that our personnel require who incessantly render faithful and dedicated service to the Filipino people,” Faustino said.

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