Death toll rises as Philippines retrieves more bodies after storm
President Ferdinand Marcos Jr to fly over devastated areas after Tropical Storm Nalgae swept through the country over the weekend.
More bodies have been retrieved from flood-stricken parts of the Philippines, lifting the death toll from Tropical Storm Nalgae to at least 98.
More than half the fatalities were from a series of flash floods and landslides that destroyed villages on the southern island of Mindanao over the weekend, the nation’s disaster agency said.
The autonomous Bangsamoro region accounted for 53 deaths, with 22 people still missing.
“We have shifted our operation from search and rescue to retrieval operation because the chances of survival after two days is almost nil,” said Naguib Sinarimbo, Bangsamoro’s civil defence chief.
Across the country, some 63 people were reported missing, while 69 people had been injured, the agency said.
Those who survived the storm continued to clean up their sodden and mud-damaged homes after Nalgae struck on an extended holiday weekend for All Saints’ Day, when millions of Filipinos travel around the country to visit the graves of loved ones.
The storm, which made landfall five times, submerged villages, destroyed crops and cut off power in many regions, with damage to infrastructure estimated at about 758 million Philippine pesos ($13m).
Philippines President Ferdinand Marcos Jr, who expressed shock at the number of deaths from the storm, is due to conduct aerial inspections of submerged villages in Cavite province, near the capital Manila, later on Monday.
The Philippines sees an average of 20 typhoons a year, with frequent landslides and floods blamed in part on the growing intensity of tropical cyclones.
Tropical Storm Nalgae is now heading towards southern China.