Cebu City malls offer temporary shelter, free WiFi to those affected by ‘Odette’

December 16, 2021 - 6:08 PM
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This composite photo shows Cebu City malls. (SM Cebu City, Robinsons Galleria Cebu, Ayala Malls Cebu/Facebook)

Three big shopping centers in Cebu City opened their doors to the public and offered them as temporary shelters to those affected by Typhoon “Odette” (International name: Rai).

Cebu City is among the cities and provinces placed under Tropical Cyclone Wind Signal No. 4, according to the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration’s 5 p.m. weather bulletin.

The state weather bureau earlier announced that Odette first made landfall over Siargao Island in Surigao del Norte.

In the latest update, it now has “maximum sustained winds of 195 kilometer per hour near the center and gustiness of up to 270 kph and central pressure of 915hPa.”

Odette maintained its strength and is now over Liloan, Southern Leyte.

Due to the inclement weather, the branches of SM City, Ayala Malls and Robinsons Galleria in the capital of Cebu province issued separate advisories addressing customers and nearby residents. They are providing temporary shelters within their premises.

SM City Cebu said that overnight parking fees will be waived on December 16.

Free Wi-Fi, charging stations will also be provided.

Moreover, a help desk will also be ready to serve those who need assistance.

Robinsons Galleria Cebu also announced that it will be providing free overnight parking, Wi-Fi and charging stations until December 17.

Ayala Center Cebu, on the other hand, advised that the mall itself will be closed by 5 p.m.

However, it will still open its doors to customers who will wait out the storm.

“Overnight parking fees will be waived and our team [on the ground] are available to assist you,” it said.

“We will continue to keep our doors open as shelter for you, our customers, to wait out the storm inside the safety and comfort of our mall. Thank you and stay safe!” it added.

PAGASA also warned the public of severe winds, storm surges and heavy flooding in low-lying and coastal areas.

“Considering these developments, the public and disaster risk reduction and management offices concerned are advised to take all necessary measures to protect life and property,” PAGASA said.

“Persons living in areas identified to be highly or very highly susceptible to these hazards are advised to follow evacuation and other instructions from local officials,” it added.

In its 5 p.m. weather bulletin, the areas placed under Tropical Cyclone Wind Signal No. 4 are:

Visayas
  • Southern Leyte
  • The southwestern portion of Leyte (Hilongos, Bato, Matalom) Bohol
  • The central and southern portions of Cebu (Lapu-Lapu City, Cordova, Cebu City, Mandaue City, Consolacion, Liloan, Toledo City, City of Talisay, Minglanilla, City of Naga, Pinamungahan, San Fernando, City of Carcar, Aloguinsan, Barili, Sibonga, Dumanjug, Ronda, Argao, Alcantara, Moalboal, Badian, Dalaguete, Alcoy, Alegria, Malabuyoc, Boljoon, Oslob, Ginatilan, Samboan, Santander)
  • The central and southern portions of Negros Oriental (Canlaon City, Vallehermoso, City of Guihulngan, La Libertad, Jimalalud, Tayasan, Ayungon, Bindoy, Manjuyod, Mabinay, City of Bayawan, Basay, Bais City, Pamplona, San Jose, City of Tanjay, Amlan)
  • The central and southern portions of Negros Occidental (La Castellana, Pontevedra, Hinigaran, Moises Padilla, Isabela, Binalbagan, City of Himamaylan, City of Kabankalan, Ilog, Cauayan, Candoni, City of Sipalay, Hinoba-An

Mindanao

  • Dinagat Islands
  • Surigao del Norte including Siargao and Bucas Grande Islands