Philippines hit by Typhoon Koppu

Philippines hit by Typhoon Koppu


A powerful typhoon is battering the northern Philippines, with at least one person dead, several missing and thousands forced to flee their homes.Typhoon Koppu made landfall near the town of Casiguran on the island of Luzon on Sunday morning, bringing winds of close to 200km/h (124mph).The vast weather system toppled trees and power lines, triggering floods and landslides.Koppu has since weakened but officials fear further flooding.With the typhoon moving slowly, heavy rain is likely to fall in the same areas for several days.More than 15,000 people have had to evacuate their homes, with more expected in the coming days.”I must emphasise that this is just the start. People must remain alert while we try to pick up the pieces in areas already hit,” said Alexander Pama, head of the government’s main disaster agency, quoted by AFP.A teenage boy was killed and four other people injured in Manila, when a tree toppled onto houses.Rescuers saw two bodies floating in floodwater in northern Nueva Ecija, one of the worst-hit states, but it has not been confirmed if they died because of the typhoon.

Flights and ferry services in the north have been cancelled and some bus services in mountain areas suspended due to the threat of landslides.On Friday, President Benigno Aquino made a televised warning, the first time he had done so since Super Typhoon Haiyan in 2013, which killed more than 6,300 people.BBC science editor David Shukman, who is in the capital Manila, says public warning systems have been greatly improved since Typhoon Haiyan, so there is a much better chance of keeping people safe.Typhoon Koppu, also known as Lando, is up to 650 km (404 miles) across.Speaking in Manila, Lotta Sylwander of Unicef told the BBC that people in the worst hit areas needed to be able to sustain themselves for up to 72 hours.


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