Bangkok, Dec 18 (EFE).- Typhoon Rai has wreaked havoc across the Philippines, causing at least 31 deaths and displacing more than 328,000, said the disaster management agency Saturday.
The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) noted that only 2,283 displaced were in evacuation centers.
Nearly 200 towns are without electricity as floods caused by heavy rains have inundated swathes of territories and damaged several roads on the affected islands.
The typhoon, known locally as Odette, made landfall Thursday, carrying winds of up to 240 km per hour.
It lost steam as it left the Philippines for the South China Sea, carrying winds of up to 185 km per hour, said the met department.
Road closures and flooding made it difficult for rescue teams on inundated islands like Siargao.
Governor Francisco Matugas said Friday that the entire island has been “devastated.”
The passenger terminals of Siargao airport, where Rai arrived as a super typhoon with sustained winds of 190 km per hour, have suffered huge damages even as the runways are in good condition.
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said he would visit the affected areas over the weekend.
The typhoon, the 15th to hit the Philippines this year, passed through nine islands.
It destroyed communications, ripped off roofs, and damaged numerous buildings during the passage.
An average of 20 typhoons hit the Philippines yearly.
The most destructive, so far, has been Super Typhoon Haiyan – the largest known to make landfall – which struck Samar and Leyte islands in November 2013, killing some 7,000 people and leaving 200,000 homeless.
The Philippines is one of the countries most vulnerable to climate change due to natural disasters and sits on the so-called “Pacific Ring of Fire,” an area that sees about 90 percent of the planet’s seismic and volcanic activity. EFE