Sunday, November 10, 2013

Vietnam girds for Typhoon Haiyan after 10,000 reported dead

Ceclia Yap and Joel Guinto in Bloomberg: Super Typhoon Haiyan killed more than 10,000 people in the Philippines, the Associated Press reported, as storm surges flooded islands and strong winds knocked down buildings and destroyed an airport before moving toward Vietnam.

Haiyan, the year’s most powerful cyclone, killed as many as 10,000 people in and around Tacloban City, the capital of Leyte province, when it made landfall Nov. 8, AP reported today, citing regional police chief Elmer Soria. An additional 300 fatalities were confirmed on nearby Samar island and 2,000 others were missing, the AP cited Leo Dacaynos of Samar province’s disaster office as saying.

“It is most important now to look after the survivors; we don’t want to expose them to the elements, get sick and add to the casualties,” President Benigno Aquino said yesterday in a briefing in Manila. “It will be a second tragedy if we fail” in post-disaster management, he said. The president is in Tacloban today.

While the official death toll posted by the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council was at 151 as of 6 a.m. Manila time today, the number was expected to rise as the government receives reports from provinces still out of reach, Major Rey Balido, spokesman of the disaster-monitoring agency, said in a mobile-phone message.

In addition to the central-region deaths, four people were killed in Palawan, one drowned in Batangas and one was crushed by a tree in Quezon province, according to the disaster agency. In the southern Philippines, one person was struck by lightning in Zamboanga City and one was electrocuted in Surigao del Sur, the agency said.

...Almost 603,000 people had been evacuated from provinces extending from Nghe An in northern Vietnam to Phu Yen in the southern central region as of 5 a.m. local time today. Planned evacuations now cover 13 provinces affecting almost 860,000 residents, according to a government statement posted today....

NOAA map of Haiyan's track

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