FILE PHOTO: A woman places candles on a tombstone at a public cemetery carved into the side of a mountain as All Saints' Day is celebrated on November 1, 2013 in Marikina City, Philippines. (Photo by Dondi Tawatao/Getty Images)
Hide Caption

Philippine typhoon death toll could reach 10,000

a a a a
Share this story

TACLOBAN, Philippines (AP) -- The death toll from one of the strongest storms on record that ravaged the central Philippine city of Tacloban could reach 10,000 people, officials said Sunday after the extend of massive devastation became apparent and horrified residents spoke of storm surges as high as trees.

Regional police chief Elmer Soria said he was briefed by Leyte provincial Gov. Dominic Petilla late Saturday and told there were about 10,000 deaths on the island, mostly by drowning and from collapsed buildings. The governor's figure was based on reports from village officials in areas where Typhoon Haiyan slammed Friday.

Tacloban city administrator Tecson Lim said that the death toll in the city alone "could go up to 10,000."

About 300-400 bodies have already been recovered, Lim said.

The typhoon barreled through six central Philippine islands on Friday, wiping away buildings and leveling seaside homes. Most of the deaths and destruction were on Leyte Island, where Tacloban is located.

The typhoon weakened Sunday as it approached central and northern Vietnam where authorities evacuated more than 500,000 people.

"The rescue operation is ongoing. We expect a very high number of fatalities as well as injured," Interior Secretary Mar Roxas said after visiting Tacloban on Saturday. "All systems, all vestiges of modern living - communications, power, water - all are down. Media is down, so there is no way to communicate with the people in a mass sort of way."

President Benigno Aquino III said the casualties "will be substantially more" than the official count of 151 as of Sunday - but gave no figure or estimate. He said the government's priority was to restore power and communications in isolated areas to allow for the delivery of relief and medical assistance to victims.

The Philippine Red Cross and its partners were preparing for a major relief effort "because of the magnitude of the disaster," said the agency's chairman, Richard Gordon.

---

Associated Press writers Oliver Teves and Teresa Cerojano in Manila, and Minh Tran in Hanoi, Vietnam, contributed to this report.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Print this article

Comments

Hmm... It looks like you’re not a WCPO Insider. or Subscribe now to contribute!

More Sports News
Leake's HR leads Reds over Pirates 7-5 for split
Leake's HR leads Reds over Pirates 7-5 for split

Mike Leake doubled and hit a two-run homer Tuesday night, ending Gerrit Cole's winning streak and leading the Cincinnati Reds to a 7-5…

Cincinnati Reds to honor Jackie Robinson
Cincinnati Reds to honor Jackie Robinson

The Cincinnati Reds will join the rest of the MLB in honoring Jackie Robinson on Tuesday.

Aroldis Chapman takes big step toward comeback
Aroldis Chapman takes big step toward comeback

"Everything was great," Reds closer Aroldis Chapman said after he threw off a mound for the first time since he was hit in the face…

Reditorial Cartoon: The Billy Hamilton model
Reditorial Cartoon: The Billy Hamilton model

Billy Hamilton finally showed a burst of greatness, but not after a little bit of a warm up. 

Pirates beat Reds in finish of suspended game
Pirates beat Reds in finish of suspended game

The game that started Monday with 10 home runs ended Tuesday with hardly a whimper.

Good job, Bubba! Watson wins 2nd Masters
Good job, Bubba! Watson wins 2nd Masters

Bubba Watson's second Masters title was nothing like the green jacket he won two years ago.

Reds win! Offense explodes in 12-4 win over Rays
Reds win! Offense explodes in 12-4 win over Rays

Chris Heisey hit his first grand slam and Devin Mesoraco homered and drove in career high-tying four runs as the…

Xavier loses another top scorer
Xavier loses another top scorer

Forward Justin Martin has decided to transfer for his final season, leaving the Musketeers without the top two scorers from last season's team.

Source: Chris Mack to remain Xavier's head coach
Source: Chris Mack to remain Xavier's head coach

Just when fans of the Xavier men's basketball team thought they were keeping their coach for another season, a new suitor has swooped in an…

Bengals sign 2013 3rd-rounder to bolster D-line
Bengals sign 2013 3rd-rounder to bolster D-line

Marvin Lewis hopes a change of scenery is all Sam Montgomery needs to maximize the potential that made him a third-round draft pick in 2013.