Sea voyages, flights to Siargao cancelled

GENERAL LUNA, Siargao Island (MindaNews / 3 Dec) – Boat trips and plane flights going to Siargao Island on Friday were cancelled because of heavy rains affecting Mindanao’s eastern seaboard.

Motorcycle riders struggle with the strong rain and winds in General Luna, SIargao Island on Friday (3 December 2021). The bad weather caused the cancellation of boat trips and flights to the island. MindaNews photo by ROEL N. CATOTO

Boat trips to neighboring Dinagat Islands were cancelled as well.

Elaine Pangilinan, acting station commander of Coast Guard Station Siargao, ordered the suspension of trips for vessels with capacity of 250 gross tonnage and below plying the Surigao-to-Siargao route and vice versa because sea condition was “rough to very rough” with waves as high as 2.8 to 4.5 meters.

Her counterpart in Coast Guard Station Dinagat Islands, Christian Robert Nieto, issued a similar notice.

Heavy rains have kept pouring here since Thursday night with moderate to strong winds as the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) issued a series of “heavy rainfall warnings” since early morning because of Typhoon “Nyatoh,” which is somewhere in the eastern part of the country but outside the Philippines area of responsibility.

Cebu Pacific flights from Manila and Cebu were also cancelled this morning, according to Richard Alas, officer-in-charge of the local office of the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines.

A Philippine Airlines flight from Cebu, however, was able to land, he added.

General Luna Mayor Cecilia Rusillon, meanwhile, strictly imposed a no-sail policy to tourists who wanted to do island-hopping.

For boat owners serving tourists, bad weather means zero income.

“We are taking shelter because of the rains. Better safe than sorry,” said Christina Palma, owner of Moonpath yacht service operating in Siargao.

Some surfers around the island, however, were happy.

“This kind of weather would always offer huge waves, to our delight,” said seasoned surfer Tads Meras. (Roel N. Catoto / MindaNews)