Power on Rota almost fully restored


Chinese small business owners last Saturday turn over their donation to House floor leader Glenn Maratita (R-Rota) last Saturday to help the people of Rota affected by Typhoon Mangkhut. (Jon Perez)

The island of Rota is recovering fairly quickly, with nearly the whole island re-energized a week after Typhoon Mangkhut raked the island.

In a telephone interview with Rota Mayor Eifram Atalig yesterday, he said that about 90 percent of the island has been re-energized.

During Saipan Tribune’s visit to Rota last Tuesday, it was learned that 40-plus power poles were either knocked over or destroyed. The entire island had no power and water.

Yet water has already been completely restored on the island yesterday.

At the current pace of recovery, Atalig expects normalcy in a week or so.

“Our recovery efforts have been good…we are inching up and will be up to normalcy in about one week,” he said.

Despite these developments, many Rota residents are still without a home or were left with inhabitable homes after Typhoon Mangkhut.

Atalig said the American Red Cross-NMI Chapter remains on Rota and continues with its humanitarian aid as it did for Saipan when Typhoon Soudelor hit the island in 2015.

Atalig said he is aware that the people of Rota are growing frustrated but he would like to assure his constituents that the administration is pushing to speed up the recovery process.

“There is a way to get help but there is a process…It may take time but we are seriously pushing to speed up this process,” he said.

Atalig also reported that the Region 9 Federal Emergency Management Agency is still on Rota, conducting damage assessment before they can carry out further recovery efforts.

The Saipan community has also banded together to collect resources to aid those who were affected by Typhoon Mangkhut on Rota.

Atalig said, on behalf of Rota, he is thankful for the amount of help Rota has been receiving from the Saipan community and those who organized the Ayuda Luta Rota Relief Drive.

The relief drive was a collaborative effort among the Ayuda Luta Relief Drive, Lady Diann Torres Foundation, the CNMI Women’s Association, and the Department of Fire and Emergency Management Services.

Kimberly B. Esmores | Reporter
Kimberly Albiso Bautista has covered a wide range of news beats, including the community, housing, crime, and more. She now covers sports for the Saipan Tribune. Contact her at kimberly_bautista@saipantribune.com.

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