Dozens dead as Storm Agaton causes landslides in the Philippines

At least 25 people in central and southern provinces have died, police say

Heavy rains caused by a tropical storm have killed at least 25 people in the central and southern Philippines.

Twenty-two people died in landslides in four villages in central Leyte province on Sunday and Monday, according to Baybay city police chief Lt Col Joemen Collado. At least six other people were reported missing in the landslides and a search was under way, he said.

Three other storm-related deaths were reported by the government’s disaster response agency in the southern provinces of Davao de Oro and Davao Oriental.

“In one village, a landslide occurred and other victims, unfortunately, were also swept away by the surge of water,” Lt Col Collado told the DZBB radio network.

“There were at least six missing but there could be more,” he said.

Nearly 200 floods were reported in different areas in central and southern provinces at the weekend. These displaced about 30,000 families, some of whom were moved to emergency shelters, officials said.

Coastguards, police and firefighters rescued some villagers in flooded communities, including some who were trapped on their roofs.

In central Cebu city, schools and work were suspended on Monday and Mayor Michael Rama declared a state of emergency to allow the rapid release of vital funds.

At least 20 storms and typhoons batter the Philippines each year, mostly during the rainy season that begins around June. Some storms have hit even during the scorching summer months in recent years.

The disaster-prone nation also lies on the Pacific Ring of Fire where many of the world’s volcanic eruptions and earthquakes occur.

Updated: April 11, 2022, 7:04 PM