At least 75 dead after storm Usman hits Philippines

At least 75 dead after storm Usman hits Philippines

At least 75 dead after storm Usman hits Philippines

Officials expect the death toll to rise.

While it did not have powerful winds it brought heavy rains that caused floods and loosened the soil, triggering landslides in some areas.

Nearly 12,000 people were also evacuated from their homes in the Bicol region after the low-pressure area, locally named "Usman", hit the eastern side of the country on Saturday, the office said.

At least 16 power stations in Bicol, Western Visayas and Eastern Visayas experienced temporary shutdowns due to stormy weather, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) said in a situation report.

Local media have reported dozens missing or trapped by the landslides.

Most victims died in landslides, including a family of three asleep when their house was buried in Legazpi City, 336 kilometres southeast of Manila, police said on Sunday. Initial reports said two people were killed and seven missing in that incident.

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Hanover police said officials were able to stop the auto , "overpower" the driver and take him into custody. Incoming and outgoing flights have been suspended until 8 p.m, although the airport terminal remains open.

Many areas were still flooded and emergency teams had to use boats and trucks to reach some areas, said Edgar Posadas, a spokesman for the agency.

A state of calamity has been declared in the provinces of Albay and Sorsogon and several of their towns due to the effects of the weakened Usman.

Although Usman has since moved westward away from the country, many affected areas were still experiencing seasonal rains, hampering rescue and recovery efforts, he added.

Thousands of travelers were left stranded at airports, seaports and bus terminals after several domestic flights and ferry services were canceled, Reuters reported.

Each year the Philippines is hit by an average of 20 cyclones causing floods, landslides and other accidents. The weather is expected to improve in most parts of the country by Monday.

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