Science

11 dead in Philippines storm

(AFP)

At least 11 people were killed and seven others were missing after heavy rain across the Philippines flooded villages and triggered landslides, authorities said Tuesday.

Severe Tropical Storm Kompasu drenched swathes of the most populous island of Luzon on Monday as it swept across the archipelago nation towards the South China Sea.

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Six people were killed and two missing in landslides in the landlocked mountainous province of Benguet, and one person drowned in the province of Cagayan, the national disaster agency said. 

Four people were killed as flash floods hit two towns on the western island of Palawan, where five other people are still missing, officials added.

The coast guard said its personnel involved in the rescue effort also recovered three other bodies in the northern province of Ilocos Sur, but the disaster agency could not immediately confirm if the deaths were related to the storm. 

“Eleven municipalities were flooded but it subsided this morning,” Cagayan provincial information officer Rogelio Sending told AFP.

Major highways and bridges were flooded, he said, but the water was retreating Tuesday as the storm bore down on the Asian mainland.

“Around seven to eight barangays (villages) are still flooded… due to clogged drainage or lack of drainage,” said Earl Timbancaya, a disaster officer in the city of Puerto Princesa on Palawan.

“But it’s subsiding now.”

The Philippines is hit by an average of 20 storms and typhoons every year, which typically wipe out harvests, homes and infrastructure in already impoverished areas.

Because a warmer atmosphere holds more water, climate change increases the risk and intensity of flooding from extreme rainfall.

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