East Hawaii News

Red Cross Helping Locate Family Members in Philippines

November 11, 2013, 5:29 PM HST
* Updated November 11, 5:36 PM
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The Hawaii Red Cross is working with its national counterpart as well as the Philippine Red Cross to help those looking for information about family members in the nation devastated by Typhoon Haiyon.

The American Red Cross has sent two telecommunications specialists and a satellite system to the Philippines to assist in communications there.

Those looking for missing family members can call 808-739-8115 and leave a message with their name and telephone number. A caseworker will call back to obtain the full name, address and telephone number of the missing person.

The Hawaii Red Cross will forward inquiries to the American Red Cross which is working with the Philippine Red Cross to locate family members.

“We know that some Hawaii residents are worried about trying to reach their loved ones,” said Coralie Matayoshi, CEO of the Hawaii State Chapter of the American Red Cross.

Matayoshi said since communications were severely damaged by Haiyon, it may take days or even weeks to reach certain areas.

“We ask for everyone’s patience as we try to help in the search,” she said.

Haiyon hit the Philippines Friday with sustained winds of more than 145 mph.

The typhoon affected 4.3 million people across 36 provinces, the Red Cross said, and 1,200 evacuation centers had been set up to assist the more than 330,000 people left homeless by the storm.

According to various media accounts, more than 10,000 perished in the Philippines alone.

The typhoon has crossed the South China Sea and onto Vietnam, where the Red Cross is still assisting those affected by earlier storms.

Those looking to assist the Red Cross in their efforts can mail a check to American Red Cross, Hawaii State Chapter, 4155 Diamond Head Rd., Honolulu, HI 96816. Indicate “Philippine Typhoon” in the memo line for the Philippine response specifically or “Pacific Typhoon” to assist in efforts there, in Vietnam or elsewhere in the region.

Call 1-800-REDCROSS or visit redcross.org for more information.

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