Monsoon rains flood Philippines as thousands evacuated

Monsoon rains flood Philippines as thousands evacuated

A boy swims on a flooded street following heavy rains, in Manila, Philippines on Saturday. (Reuters photo)
A boy swims on a flooded street following heavy rains, in Manila, Philippines on Saturday. (Reuters photo)

Philippine authorities evacuated thousands of people to safety as heavy rains and flooding caused by the southwest monsoon killed at least one person.

More than 87,000 people were affected by the monsoon rains, which were enhanced by Typhoon In-Fa even after it left the Philippines, according to the national disaster agency. At least 22,000 individuals are in evacuation centres, it said.

A 39-year-old woman in Baguio City, north of Manila, died from a vehicular accident caused by a fallen tree, the agency said. Authorities are verifying at least two more reported deaths.

Weather disruptions are also complicating coronavirus containment efforts and vaccination drives. Health officials have asked people to continue to mask up and observe safe distancing measures amid the flooding and evacuations.

An average of 20 typhoons pass through the Philippines each year. Between 2000 and 2016, natural disasters cost the Philippines $20 billion in damage or an average of $1.2 billion annually, according to an Asian Development Bank Institute paper.

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