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Published: Sunday January 12, 2014 MYT 9:38:00 PM
Updated: Sunday January 12, 2014 MYT 9:39:56 PM

Heavy rains leave six dead in Philippines

DAVAO, Philippines: Heavy rains battering the southern Philippines left at least six people dead and eight others missing, authorities said Sunday, sparking fears for typhoon survivors still living in makeshift shelters.

Four people were crushed to death in their homes on the southern island of Mindanao after landslides struck the mountain town of Tarragona on Saturday, local police said.

A seven-year-old girl was killed and three others were missing after a landslide in the gold-rush mining town of Monkayo, while a one-year-old boy drowned when a flash flood from nearby mountains hit the mining city of Bayugan, civil defence officials said.

Two other people went missing as they crossed a swollen river in the town of Santiago, while three fishermen vanished after going out to sea in the coastal town of Tubay, local police said.

Officials fear the rains may worsen the already-harsh living conditions for survivors of Super Typhoon Haiyan, many of whom are still lodged in temporary shelters after their homes were destroyed in the November typhoon.

Government weather forecaster Manny Mendoza said the heavy rains would continue for two to three days, primarily affecting the islands of Samar and Leyte which bore the brunt of Haiyan, one of the most intense typhoons on record.

The downpours have pounded the southern and central Philippines for three days as a low-pressure area - an atmospheric phenomenon that causes heavy rains - came closer to Mindanao, finally making landfall in Surigao del Sur province, about 820 kilometres (510 miles) southeast of Manila, on Sunday.

The government civil defence office said that more than 4,000 people had been evacuated from their homes on the banks of waterways and on hillsides under a precautionary measure due to the rains.

Haiyan, one of the worst natural disasters to hit the Philippines, left nearly 8,000 people dead or missing as it flattened whole towns in Samar and Leyte with strong winds and tsunami-like storm surges. -AFP


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