MANILA – At least 26 people have died and 43 were missing due to floods and landslides caused by the storm Kai-Tak in the central Philippines, while nearly 250,000 people have been affected, according to the latest official figures on Monday.
National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council spokesperson Romina Marasigan told reporters that the deaths and disappearance have been reported in the provinces of Biliran, Leyte, Samar and Eastern Samar and were caused mostly due to landslides.
A total of 248,790 people have been affected by Kai-Tak, of whom 92,613 have been housed at 302 evacuation centers, according to official figures.
At least four bridges and 17 stretches of highway have become unusable and 9,775 passengers remain stranded in several ports due to ferry and boat cancellations.
Kai-Tak has also led to the cancellation of 113 domestic flights since Dec. 13.
According to the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), Urduja, the local name of Kai-Tak, made landfall on the island of Palawan on Monday with a speed of 18 kilometers per hour (11.2 miles per hour).
PAGASA said that Kai-Tak had sustained winds of 45 kilometers per hour and gusts of up to 60 kilometers per hour.
Kai-Tak is forecast to move on on Tuesday, but residents of Palawan have been advised to follow advice and updates from authorities.
Some 15-20 typhoons hit the Philippine archipelago every year during the rainy season which normally starts in June and continues until November.
In November 2013, Typhoon Haiyan, one of the most powerful typhoons ever to make landfall in the Philippines with winds up to 315 kilometers per hour, caused 6,300 deaths, with more than 1,000 people missing and 14 million affected.