Santa Rosa, Philippines: Residents of flooded farming villages in the Philippines were trapped on their rooftops on Monday and animals floated down fast-rising rivers, as deadly Typhoon Koppu dumped more intense rain.
Koppu, the second strongest storm to hit the disaster-plagued Southeast Asian archipelago this year, has killed at least two people and forced more than 60,000 people from their homes, authorities said.
After making landfall on Sunday morning on the east coast of Luzon, the Philippines’ biggest island, the slow-moving typhoon has brought heavy rain to some of the nation’s most important farming areas.
“I’ve never seen anything like this. It’s the worst flood I’ve seen in my entire life,” farmer Reynaldo Ramos, 68, said as he walked through knee-deep water in Santa Rosa, about two hours’ drive north of Manila.
Military, government and volunteer rescue units equipped with rubber boats were trying to help residents in dozens of flooded villages, according to Nigel Lontoc, a regional rescue official.
“The floods are rising fast and some people are now on their rooftops,” Lontoc said, but added there were not enough rescuers and he did not know how many have been rescued.
Lontoc said many thousands of people may be stranded in those villages, although it was too early to determine an exact number.
Authorities confirmed at least two people had died because of the storm, but the death toll is expected to rise as full accounts from badly hit villages are gathered.
The storm is forecast to continue dumping heavy rains across the Philippines until Wednesday.