QUEENS (PIX11) – They anxiously wait for word.
“We are worried about everybody,” Omar Blando said in a Woodside, Queens restaurant Friday. Blando’s 12-year-old daughter is in Cebu City in the Philippines. He hasn’t heard from his family there since late Thursday night.
Typhoon Haiyan slammed into the nation made up of islands with extreme winds. It’s one of the strongest storms on record. Hundreds of thousands of people have been evacuated from their homes.
On Friday estimated sustained winds at landfall were 195 miles per hour with gusts up to 235 miles per hour.
Many in the Filipino community in New York can’t get in touch with family and friends in hard hit areas. There’s no power, phones or internet.
“It is very devastating. I send out prayers to my family there and my people,” Simon Corpuz said as he left his Queens home.
The National Alliance for Filipino Concerns is already planning to raise money for relief efforts. Jonna Baldres was working in the Woodside office Friday.
“We make sure it goes to organizations that are really helping out,” Baldres said.
Because of cut-off communications in the Philippines, the extent of the damage or casualties was not know Friday night.
Early reports said several people died.