Mon, Aug 01, 2011 - Page 4 News List

Nock-ten toll rises to 52 in Philippines as nearby Mufia makes presence felt


The death toll from Tropical Storm Nock-ten rose to 52 in the Philippines even as another approaching storm left two more people missing, the civil defense office said yesterday.

Tropical Storm Mufia was yesterday still about 990km east of the country, but it has influenced the local weather, causing heavy rains and a tornado, National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council deputy officer Florentino Sison said.

As Mufia approached, a fishing boat with eight men on board capsized because of strong rain just north of Manila last week, leaving two men missing and feared dead, Sison said.

Another person was injured by a freak tornado in the same area on Friday, also due to Mufia’s influence, he added.

“It [Mufia] did not have a direct effect, but it has affected the local weather situation, causing a tornado, flooding and heavy rains, leading to the mishap with the fishermen,” Sison said.

Mufia was moving northward and was not expected to hit land, he added.

Meanwhile, the death toll from Nock-ten’s rampage through the country in the previous week rose to 52 dead and 27 missing, as more reports came in from storm-hit provinces in the archipelago.

Most of those killed were drowned or buried in landslides, while virtually all of the missing were fishermen who vanished at sea when the storm hit from Tuesday last week to Thursday, the council said.

Nock-ten has since slammed into north-central Vietnam as a tropical depression, killing one person.

Vietnamese disaster official Nguyen Xuan Hung of central Nghe An Province said a 68-year-old man was electrocuted by a falling power line on Saturday.

The government said about 2,500 hectares of rice and other crop fields were submerged. More than 44,000 people in six provinces were evacuated ahead of the storm.

Weather forecasters said the storm downgraded into a tropical depression after making landfall on Saturday evening and was expected to dissipate later yesterday in central Laos.

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