The Philippines is currently feeling the impact of yet another tropical storm in what has been a very busy year for the archipelago. One person died after being hit by a falling tree and thousands of people have been evacuated from their homes.
Tropical storm Jangmi (known locally as Seniang) struck Surigao del Sur province on northern Mindanao in the early hours of Monday morning GMT. It had sustained winds approaching 80kph with gusts of around 100kph.
However, the worst of the damage was created by the torrential downpours which forced 14,000 people out of their homes. The heavy rains in have been in place for over three days now which led the governor, Johnny Pimentel, to declare a ‘state of calamity’.
Butan recorded 188mm of rain on Monday whilst Hinatuan had 284mm in the same 24 hour period. Many places are likely to see a similar amount of rain over the next 24 hours as the storm staggers across the country at around 15kph. It is not expected to clear Palawan until New Year’s Day.
Of the 30 storms that developed in the Northwest Pacific in 2014, 19 of them have affected the Philippines. This compares with the average of 20 per year.
Of greatest significance is the number of strong systems that have hit the country. There have been 16 named storms that have battered the Philippines this year. Six of these were strong enough to be classified as typhoons.
Just four weeks ago Super Typhoon Hagupit, lashed central parts of the country with winds of 215kph claiming 18 lives in the process and causing 114 million dollars worth of damage in the process.