Home World Asia News Typhoon Hagupit hits eastern Philippines

Typhoon Hagupit hits eastern Philippines


Typhoon Hagupit has hit the eastern Philippines, toppling trees and power lines and threatening coastal areas with a powerful sea-surge.

More than half a million people have fled coastal villages in the area, which was still recovering from Typhoon Haiyan last year.

In Tacloban, where thousands were killed by Haiyan, roofs have been blown away and streets are flooded.

However, thyphoon Hagupit does not appear to have been as severe as many had feared.

So far there have been no reports of casualties.

Typhoon Hagupit, known locally as Ruby, was packing maximum sustained winds of 109mph and gusts of 130 mph when it made landfall in Dolores in Eastern Samar province on Saturday evening local time.Typhoon Hagupit Philippines

Dolores police spokesman Alex Robin told AP news agency late on Saturday that many trees had already come down.

“We are totally in the dark here. The only light comes from flashlights.”

Maulid Warfa, the head of UNICEF’s field office in Tacloban, said their five-storey concrete building was shaking under the force of the storm.

Speaking early on Sunday he said: “We’re in this dark building and it’s raining heavily and there’s no electricity and we are using candles.

“We have a generator… but because of the rain and the flood and power problems we have switched it off. It’s too dangerous.”

Maulid Warfa added: “Our concern now is not us sitting in this building. Our concern is for the little children who have had to go through this experience for the second time in 13 months.”

About 19,000 people from coastal villages are in 26 evacuation centers, Tacloban’s disaster office spokesman Ilderando Bernadas told Reuters.

Typhoon Hagupit’s huge diameter of 370 miles meant that about 50 million people, or half the nation’s population, were living in vulnerable areas, officials have said.

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