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New typhoon rocks Philippines

Tens of thousands affected by new flooding, landslides

Residents in Zambales province leave their flooded homes (Photo by Anthony Bayarong) Residents in Zambales province leave their flooded homes (Photo by Anthony Bayarong)
  • ucanews.com reporter, Manila
  • Philippines
  • August 16, 2012
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More people were left homeless on Thursday as Typhoon Helen swept across the country, inundating vast areas in the north.

The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) said floods and landslides caused by Helen, internationally known as Kai-tak, have affected 40 cities and towns in the Ilocos, Central Luzon and Cordillera regions.

An estimated 19,923 families or 86,741 people have been affected. Many have had to seek refuge in 77 evacuation centers. At least seven people have been reported dead with three injured and two missing.

NDRRMC has released a raft of grim statistics on the extent of the damage. When combined with last week's torrential monsoon rains, the death toll stands at 109. Nearly a million families in 175 towns and 36 cities in 17 provinces have been affected, many of them left homeless. There are currently more than 200,000 people still sheltering in evacuation centers.

The estimated damage to property, including infrastructure and agriculture, is more than 3 billion pesos (US$ 228,336 million.)

NDRRMC executive director Benito Ramos said that even though Typhoon Helen has left the country, a red alert still stands in flood-prone areas.

"There is still the risk of water from rivers in the north. It will take eight to 10 hours before it flows down," he said.

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