Manila: Flash floods and landslides caused by torrential rains have killed at least 47 people, including in a hard-hit southern Philippine province, where as many as 60 villagers are feared missing and buried in a torrent of rainwater, mud, rocks and trees, officials said. said Saturday.
In three towns in Maguindanao province from Thursday evening to early Friday, at least 42 people were swept away by raging floods and drowned or affected by debris-filled mudslides in three towns in Maguindanao province, said Naguib Sinarimbo, the interior minister of an autonomous Muslim region. with five provinces run by former separatist guerrilla fighters.
Five other people died elsewhere in the attack from Tropical Storm Nalgae, which ravaged the eastern province of Camarines Sur early Saturday, the government’s disaster management agency said.
But the worst storm impact yet was a mudslide laden with rainwater, rocks and trees that buried dozens of homes housing as many as 60 people in the Kusiong tribal village of Datu Odin Sinsuat town of Maguindanao, Sinarimbo told The Associated Press by phone, citing reports. of Kusiong villagers, who survived the flash flood and mudslide.
Eleven bodies, mostly of children, were exhumed Friday by rescue workers with shovels in Kusiong, he said.
“That community will be our ground zero today,” Sinarimbo said, adding that heavy equipment and more rescue workers, including military, police and volunteers, have been deployed to intensify the search and rescue work.
The coastal village, which sits at the foot of a mountain, is accessible by road, allowing more rescue workers to be deployed on Saturday to deal with one of the worst weather-related disasters to hit the south of the country in decades, he said. .
Citing reports from mayors, governors and emergency response officials, Sinarimbo said 27 died mainly from drowning and landslides in Datu Odin Sinsuat town, 10 in Datu Blah Sinsuat town and five in Upi town, all in Maguindanao.