Sat, Aug 08, 2009 - Page 4 News List

Nine killed in Philippine floods

HEAVY RAINS: Authorities said four people were swept away by flashfloods in Tarlac and Zambales, while three brothers were killed in a Baguio landslide

DPA , MANILA

A Philippine Air Force helicopter hoists up a rescuer and a stranded resident from her house during heavy flooding after a dike collapsed at the height of Typhoon Morakot in Botolan town in the northern Philippines yesterday.

PHOTO: REUTERS

Nine people, including a Canadian tourist, were killed in flashfloods and landslides in the Philippines, bringing to 41 the number of people killed in one month of heavy rains, officials said yesterday.

A Canadian mountaineer, a Filipino guide and two other Filipinos drowned in flashfloods in Capas town in Tarlac province, said a police official, Senior Superintendent Rudy Lacadin.

Lacadin, Tarlac provincial police chief, said the Canadian victim was among a group of nine Canadian and three South Korean tourists who registered for a trek to the crater of Mount Pinatubo, which straddles the provinces of Tarlac and Pampanga.

He said that the eight other Canadian tourists and the three South Koreans have all been accounted for, correcting an earlier police report that said there were two Canadian fatalities in the accident.

The victims were swept away by flashfloods on Thursday afternoon, Lacadin said.

Three brothers, aged seven to 13, were also killed in a landslide that buried their house in the northern mountain resort city of Baguio, said Alex Uy, a provincial disaster and relief official.

Uy said the brothers were asleep when the landslide occurred before dawn yesterday.

Two people also drowned in flashfloods in nearby Zambales province, local authorities said.

Six Chinese nationals from Hong Kong were rescued late on Thursday by Philippine Coast Guard personnel after their motorized boat sank off the southern province of Batangas, an official said.

Coast Guard Lieutenant Algier Ricafrente said the Chinese nationals were on their way from Mindoro to Batangas City when their vessel was battered by huge waves and strong winds.

More than 500,000 people have been adversely affected by bad weather caused by two storms and the southwest monsoon since early last month.

The weather bureau said yesterday that the rains during the previous five days were triggered by Typhoon Morakot, which was moving away from the Philippines toward Taiwan, where it was expected to make landfall late yesterday before continuing to China’s southeast coast.

The bureau warned residents in low-lying areas and near mountain slopes to take precautionary measures against possible flashfloods and landslides.

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