DUE to the devastation caused by Typhoon Odette (international name "Rai") to shipping and port facilities in various regions in Southern Philippines, the public is advised to expect temporary delays in traversing the traditional route going to Visayas and Mindanao, a joint travel advisory of the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG), Philippine Ports Authority (PPA), and Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) said.

The Ports of Matnog in Sorsogon, Allen in Northern Samar, Liloan in Southern Leyte, and Lipata in Surigao del Norte are all still "reeling from the ravages caused by Typhoon Odette, which were further aggravated by the harsh sea conditions resulting in congestion due to the reduced frequency of vessel calls," according to the statement that was issued on Tuesday.

The advisory noted that in Matnog, vessel calls are down to 9 from the usual 14 due to ongoing repairs to its modular roll-on/roll-off ramp. There are only two berthing facilities being used in Liloan while the nearby Port of Benit in the town of San Ricardo is not operational due to massive damage brought about by the typhoon.

"These ports are the main gateways of Luzon and the Visayas to Mindanao via Lipata Port in Surigao del Norte, which also sustained significant damages to its facilities," the joint travel advisory said.

Instead, the PCG, PPA, and MARINA urged the public to consider other routes for faster travel, such as Pilar, Sorosogn or Pio Duran, Albay to Masbate, to Cebu enroute to destination for those bound for the Visayas and Mindanao. The Lipata, Surigao del Norte to Opol, Misamis Oriental can be considered for those bound for Luzon.

The PCG, PPA, and MARINA said they are working round-the-clock to increase the number of vessels plying the routes to reduce congestion at the ports without sacrificing safety and security of port users.