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Slow-moving Typhoon Koppu creates flood crisis in the Philippines

Heavy rains continue to lash the northern region of the Philippines as Typhoon Koppu maintains its slow course across the country.

Wednesday October 21, 2015

Photo: IFRC

The Category 3 cyclone made landfall 350 kilometres northeast of Manila in the early hours of Sunday morning, causing extensive flooding throughout the region. Floodwaters have submerged homes in Isabela and Cagayan provinces, and inundated prime agricultural areas in Nueva Vizcaya and Nueva Ecija.

Philippine Red Cross quickly responded to the crisis, sending response teams and deploying relief and food packages to affected communities and families. Some areas remain cut off by floodwaters, forcing assessment teams to wait until waters recede before they can gain access.

The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council estimated that over 300,000 people have been affected by the powerful typhoon. More than 24,000 people have been evacuated to shelters, with over 170 having to be rescued from rising waters. The current death toll is estimated to be close to 50.

In addition to the damage wreaked on homes and farming operations, Red Cross is concerned that floodwaters will spread diseases such as leptospirosis.

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Media enquiries: Antony Balmain on +61 408 018 609