By Allanah Leahy – EM TV Online
At least 11 people are dead, with hundreds of thousands evacuated, after the Philippines’ Typhoon Melor struck the country on Monday afternoon.
Following much flooding and a blackout in the country’s east and central islands, residents were rescued yesterday off rooftops, having escaped there after floodwaters increased sharply in Mindoro, one of the worst hit islands.
The worst of Typhoon Melor appeared to be over last night, after it drifted into the South China Sea.
Heavy rains in the capital of Manila inundated roads, causing traffic chaos, but floodwaters had slowed by yesterday morning.
Electricity may not be restored until after Christmas, and over 200,000 remain in storm shelters. Mindoro Governor, Alfonso Umali, said a sad Christmas is ahead for the Philippines’ seventh-largest island.
“The floods have begun to subside, but there are still people on their roofs. Many homes were damaged. We are going to the areas on board the coast guard’s rubber boats today,” he told DZMM radio.
A coast guard report detailed a tragic scene of residents ‘drenched from the rain and crying for help’. Strong currents are hindering rescue missions.
Typhoons in the Philippines number at least 20 each year.