Super Typhoon Haiyan has made landfall and reports say that over 100 people have been killed as a result of the powerful storm. According to CNN, more than 100 people where killed in a major Philippine coastal city alone.
The report continued on to say that the death toll in the city of Tacloban was the first significant casualty report Saturday as authorities began the daunting task of surveying th devastation of the super typhoon. Reuters reported early Saturday that the death toll and damage is expected to rise sharply as rescue workers and soldiers reach areas cut off by the massive storm.
Reuters continued on to say that the storm is now moving out of the Philippines towards Vietnam. The category 5 storm did reportedly weaken to a category 4 as it moved over land, though, according to Reuters, forecasters say it could strengthen back up as it moves over the South China Sea.
According to CNN, Captain John Andrews, deputy director of the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines, told reporters that he received a radio report from the Tacloban airport station manager who said “there are more than 100 bodies in the street in Tacloban and more than 100 people injured.”
The report continued on to say that one of CNN’s reporters,Paula Hancocks, was among the first journalists to see the devastation in Tacloban on Saturday:
“It looks as though a ‘completely destroyed,’ and shell-shocked Filipinos were gathering around the airport with the anticipation that the military was bringing food, water and medicine,” Hancocks said.
According to Reuters, close to a million people had taken shelter in 37 provinces after President Benigno Aquino appealed to those in the typhoon’s path to leave vulnerable areas. Major Rey Balido, a spokesman for the national disaster agency, told reporters that “Almost all houses were destroyed, many are totally damaged. Only a few are left standing, but with partial damage.”
Many meteorologists are saying that even though the devastation in the Philippines is tragic, it could have been much worse. Because Super Typhoon Haiyan was moving at a fast pace, officials are saying that the risk of flooding and landslides were lessened. If the storm had lingered, it would have caused even more casualties for the country.
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