AT least six trips of three fast sea craft companies operating in Ormoc port were cancelled by the local Coast Guard and all sea vessels were prevented from sailing on Sunday following a weather bulletin issued by the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) on Tropical Storm ‘Nona’.
Commander Giovanni Bergantin, Ormoc Coast Guard Station chief, in a text message said that the cancellation of trips was based on the weather bureau’s warning that the center of ‘Nona’ was only about 565 kilometer east of Catarman, Northern Samar.
Bergantin said that 36 passengers from Isabel, Leyte bound for Cebu were stranded aboard the vessels docked at Pingag Port. There were also 18 rolling cargoes on hold at the two stranded vessels.
At 11 a.m. yesterday, coast guard authorities cancelled all trips from Ormoc port as Nona gained strength while heading towards Samar and Bicol area.
Although the small craft vessels were allowed to travel from Cebu to Ormoc and vice versa at 5:20 a.m., they were not allowed to leave after arriving at Pingag port at past 11 a.m. Other sea vessels in the port took shelter until a clearance to sail is issued.
The Coast Guard also warned local fishermen to refrain from fishing because of huge waves.