Friday 13 November 2020

The 2020 explosive hurricane typhoon season continues: Typhoon Vamco batters the Philippines capital Manila killing 39 people with 32 missing and more than 100,000 rescued just a month after "Super Typhoon Goni" killed more than 30 people

Typhoon Vamco thrashed the Philippines with sustained winds of 150 kilometres (90 miles) per hour—the equivalent of a category 2 hurricane. The typhoon (known as Ulysses in the Philippines) cut power to millions, caused more than 100,000 evacuations, and killed at least six people. Credit NASA

Thick mud and debris coated many villages around the Philippine capital Friday after a typhoon caused extensive flooding that sent people fleeing to their roofs and killed at least 39 people. Thousands of people have been rescued, though waters have mostly receded. The military was rescuing people in places where waters remained high. 

Amphibious assault vehicles usually used in counter-insurgency operations were deployed for the rescue work, military chief of staff Gen. Gilbert Gapay said in an emergency meeting with disaster-response officials. "We'll continue to look for the missing, help in damage assessment," Gapay said. He reported 39 deaths and 32 other people missing. Typhoon Vamco passed north of Manila between Bulacan and Pampanga provinces overnight Wednesday and early Thursday, toppling power poles and trees and damaging homes.

 A week after Typhoon Molave killed 22 people the Philippines orders more evacuations as the world's biggest storm of 2020, category 5 Typhoon Goni which is nearing "Super Typhoon Status" and is expected to impact Metro Manila, population 13 million on Monday.

More than 350,000 people had been evacuated to safety, mainly residents fleeing vulnerable coastal and low-lying areas before the typhoon hit. Philippine National Police said more than 100,000 people had been rescued, including 41,000 in the capital region. At least 3.8 million households lost power in metropolitan Manila and outlying provinces, but crews have restored electricity in many areas and power was expected to be fully restored in about three days.
Government offices were closed and classes suspended for public schools Friday. Vamco hit the Philippines on the heels of Typhoon Goni, one of the strongest typhoons in the world this year, which left more than 30 people dead or missing and damaged or destroyed 270,000 houses. Tens of thousands of people remain displaced. The Philippines is hit by about 20 typhoons and tropical storms each year and also had active seismic faults and volcanoes, making it one of the world's most disaster-prone countries.

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