‘It was scary’: Guam recovering after Typhoon Mawar topples trees, flips cars

While most of the severe weather from Typhoon Mawar has passed, many of the people who call Guam home are dealing with a mess.
Published: May. 25, 2023 at 4:16 PM HST|Updated: May. 25, 2023 at 4:53 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - While most of the severe weather from Typhoon Mawar has passed, many of the people who call Guam home are dealing with a mess — health and safety concerns and many are still without power.

Ronald Bass, a member of the U.S. Air Force who is stationed in Guam, recounted his experience of the powerful storm.

“It was pretty scary,” he said. “I think myself and everybody that is on the military installation is probably fortunate to have a facility that has been outfitted to survive things like this. But downtown is just a different story.”

He said while the worst of the storm has passed, he and everyone on the island are realizing just how hard it was hit.

“It was actually pretty shocking to wake up the next day. You know, daylight and just seeing trees that stood nice and tall just chopped down whether from you know the halfway point or just rip from the ground,” Bass said.

This airman has been stationed all over the country. He and his family have seen severe weather — but he said this storm wasn’t like one’s he has experienced in the past.

“This was just something different. It was really hard to go to sleep. I felt like the house was gonna get ripped apart. I could feel the front door flexing,” he said.

Meanwhile, another C-130 from the U.S. Coast Guard here in Honolulu took off on Thursday headed to Guam to help out in the recovery effort.

“One of our priorities is opening the port Eric commercial traffic so we can bring food and fuel back into Guam,” said Adm. Michael Day of the U.S. Coast Guard District 14.

He said his priority is making sure his people are safe so that they can help others.

“Most of the Coast Guard families are doing pretty well over there about 80% live in military housing. And the military housing has fared pretty well there’s a wide scale power outages. But in terms of the devastation we could have experienced. We’re fortunate,” Day said.

The admiral added that the men and women sent to Guam from Honolulu are there for the long haul and they’re prepared to send more resources if needed.

“I think one of the hallmarks of the Coast Guard is when things were at their worst, we’re at our best,” Day said.

“So, if their homes are decimated, we’re sending in extra workers so that people can focus on their families in their homes. But we still have that resiliency of extra people to send so we anticipated ships sunk or boats in the harbor, putting on pollution, so we sent pollution investigators, pollution responders, what we call strike team who are very specialized in helping oil responses.”

If you’d like to help those in Guam affected by the typhoon, you can visit RedCross.org or text “TYPHOON” to 90999.