200 killed in floods, landslides in southern Philippines

Girlie Linao, DPA on

Published in Weather News

MANILA, Philippines -- At least 200 people were killed in flash floods and landslides caused by Tropical Storm Tembin in the southern Philippines, officials said Saturday.

The province of Lanao del Norte suffered the most casualties, with 127 dead and 69 missing, police and disaster relief officials said.

Forty-seven people were killed in Zamboanga del Norte province, 18 in Lanao del Sur and eight in the provinces of Bukidnon and Misamis Occidental, and Iligan City, officials said.

Tembin slammed into the southern region of Mindanao Friday, displacing more than 75,000 people.

The storm hit the western province of Palawan Saturday, with maximum sustained winds of 65 mph and gusts up to 95 mph. the weather bureau said.

Emergency teams were sent to conduct search-and-rescue operations in the affected communities, but many roads were impassable.

In the town of Sibuco in Zambaonga del Norte, flash floods swept away an estimated 100 houses in a settlement of fishermen, said Manuel Luis Ochotorena, a regional civil defense director.

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"The raging waters even uprooted coconut trees along the way from the mountains, so you can just imagine the force of the floods," he said in a radio interview. "We were surprised by the extent of the damage."

Tembin, which was moving west at 14 mph, was expected to leave the Philippines by Sunday night, the weather bureau said.

Last week, 54 people were killed in landslides, flash floods and other incidents caused by Tropical Storm Kai-Tak, which struck the central Philippines.

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