Disasters & Accidents

Philippines’ Typhoon Rai death toll rises to almost 400

Bangkok Desk, Dec 28 (EFE).- At least 397 people have died and 83 remain missing in the Philippines due to the devastating Typhoon Rai, according to the official data on Tuesday.

The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, which verifies and corroborates the data of the various agencies on the ground, also said that 1,147 people have been injured and almost 561,500 displaced.

More than half of the displaced are in one of the 1,200 evacuation centers, where it is feared that overcrowding of the facilities could lead to outbreaks of Covid-19.

Rai, also known locally as Odette and which made landfall on Dec. 16 with wind gusts of up to 240 kilometers per hour, crossed from east to west through some nine islands in the country and affected more than 4.2 million people, according to official figures.

The typhoon left a trail of destruction, causing damage to homes, infrastructure and agricultural crops valued at 22 billion Philippine pesos (more than $436 million).

On Wednesday the Philippine government declared a state of calamity in six regions affected by the devastating typhoon, the 15th to hit the country this year.

An average of 20 typhoons hit the Philippines each year. Super Typhoon Haiyan, the largest in recent Philippines history, struck in November 2013, killing some 7,000 people.

The Philippines is one of the countries most vulnerable to natural disasters and also sits on the so-called Ring of Fire, an area that accumulates around 90 percent of the seismic and volcanic activity on the planet. EFE


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