News / Asia

Philippines Flood Death Toll Nears 1,000

Policemen search for missing Typhoon Washi victims in a subdivision in Iligan city, southern Philippines. Disaster agencies on Monday rushed to deliver body bags, food, water, and medicine to crowded evacuation centers in the southern Philippines as offic
Policemen search for missing Typhoon Washi victims in a subdivision in Iligan city, southern Philippines. Disaster agencies on Monday rushed to deliver body bags, food, water, and medicine to crowded evacuation centers in the southern Philippines as offic
TEXT SIZE - +

Philippine President Benigno Aquino declared a state of national calamity on Tuesday, as authorities work to recover the bodies of those killed by flash floods on the southern island of Mindanao.

Disaster agency officials said Tuesday that 957 people have died so far as a result of the floods which began in the early hours of Saturday, while 49 others remain missing.

Officials said most of the damage was done in the southern port cities of Cagayan de Oro and Iligan, where mass graves are being prepared for hundreds of unidentified victims.

Sarah Williams interview with Richard Gordon, chairman of the Philippine Red Cross:


Iligan City Mayor Lawrence Cruz told the Reuters news agency the mass graves are necessary to prevent the spread of disease as a result of the decomposing bodies.

"We have decided, after consultation with our city health officer, that we should start digging graves for the bodies and bury them temporarily because they are already in an advanced state of decomposition," he stated. "People nearby might get sick if we do not bury the bodies.'

Officials have also reported a shortage of water and food at the island's overcrowded, makeshift evacuation centers. Almost 50,000 people who lost their homes remain in public shelters.

The flooding was caused by tropical storm Washi, which swept through the southern Philippines Friday evening, dropping a month's worth of rain in 24 hours.

Romeo Lozano, a farmer who reportedly saved 200 lives, told the Associated Press how people escaped the fury of the floods by rushing to his house rooftop. "If I had not opened our gate, many people would have died because they were already waiting and wanted to go upstairs. When I opened it, they all rushed to go inside our house, there is a roof top and we were all safe there. 200 of them, mostly children and elderly," he said.

About 143,000 people were affected in 13 southern and central provinces.

The Office of Civil Defense says some 7,000 houses were swept away, destroyed or damaged.

You May Like

Multimedia Relatives of South Korean Ferry Victims Fire at Authorities

46 people are confirmed dead, but some 250 remain trapped inside sunken ferry More

War Legacy Haunts Vietnam, US Relations

$84 million project aims to clean up soil contaminated by Agent Orange More

Wikipedia Proves Useful for Tracking Flu

Technique gave better results than Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Google’s Flu Trends More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politicsi
X
Michael Eckels
April 19, 2014
There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politics

There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Face of American Farmer is Changing

The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Donetsk Governor: Ukraine Military Assault 'Delicate But Necessary'

Around a dozen state buildings in eastern Ukraine remain in the hands of pro-Russian protesters who are demanding a referendum on self-rule. The governor of the whole Donetsk region is among those forced out by the protesters. He spoke to VOA's Henry Ridgwell from his temporary new office in Donetsk city.
Video

Video Drones May Soon Send Data From High Seas

Drones are usually associated with unmanned flying vehicles, but autonomous watercraft are also becoming useful tools for jobs ranging from scientific exploration to law enforcement to searching for a missing airliner in the Indian Ocean. VOA’s George Putic reports on sea-faring drones.
Video

Video New Earth-Size Planet Found

Not too big, not too small. Not too hot, not too cold. A newly discovered planet looks just right for life as we know it, according to an international group of astronomers. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Copts in Diaspora Worry About Future in Egypt

Around 10 percent of Egypt’s population belong to the Coptic faith, making them the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. But they have become targets of violence since the revolution three years ago. With elections scheduled for May and the struggle between the Egyptian military and Islamists continuing, many Copts abroad are deeply worried about the future of their ancient church. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky visited a Coptic church outside Washington DC.
Video

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

During the two months of deadly anti-government protests that have rocked the oil-rich nation of Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro has accused the opposition of trying to initiate a coup. Though a small number of military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting against the government, VOA’s Brian Padden reports the leadership of the armed forces continues to support the president, at least for now.
Video

Video More Millenials Unplug to Embrace Board Games

A big new trend in the U.S. toy industry has more consumers switching off their high-tech gadgets to play with classic toys, like board games. This is especially true among the so-called millenial generation - those born in the 1980's and 90's. Elizabeth Lee has more from an unusual café in Los Angeles, where the new trend is popular and business is booming.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
AppleAndroid