Disasters & Accidents

Philippines searches for 26 missing in severe flooding

Manila, Dec 28 (EFE).- Philippines rescue teams on Wednesday continued searches of land and sea for 26 missing people after torrential rains and severe flooding hit the archipelago at the weekend, leaving at least 25 dead.

One of the regions hardest hit by the storm was Bicol, in the southeast of the most populated island of Luzon, where the Philippine Coast Guard confirmed to EFE that at least 12 people are still missing.

In addition, two men who were fishing in a small boat in Misamis Oriental, in the north of the southern region of Mindanao, are also being sought, while 11 are missing from the central region of Western Visayas, and one from Zamboanga, on Mindanao island.

Office of Civil Defense information officer Diego Mariano told ABS-CBN that the majority of the missing are fishermen.

In its latest update, the national disaster agency indicated that at least 25 people have died from the floods and landslides that resulted from the rain on Christmas weekend.

Northern Mindanao region recorded 16 of the deaths, five in Bicol, two in Zamboanga and two in Eastern Visayas. Nine people were injured.

In addition, some 81,400 people are still displaced from their homes and are in evacuation centers, out of the more than 390,000 who were affected.

Hundreds of evacuees take refuge in gyms and public buildings waiting to return home, while other residents try to rebuild their homes after the floods, according to images released by ABS-CBN.

The disaster marred Christmas celebrations in Asia’s most Catholic nation, where hundreds of thousands of Filipinos flock from urban centers to the provinces during the holidays.

Hit by 15-20 cyclones each year, the Philippines is ranked among the nations most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. EFE


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