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Typhoon Koppu Hits Northern Philippines


Typhoon Koppu has hit the northern Philippines forcing thousands of people to leave their homes.

According to local reports, homes have been flattened and power lines toppled.

Typhoon Koppu made landfall near the town of Casiguran on the island of Luzon on Sunday morning, October 18.

It brought winds of close to 124mph and whipped up coastal surges 12ft high.

Three days of torrential rain has been predicted, triggering major flooding and possibly landslides.

Alexander Pama, head of the government’s main disaster agency, said 10,000 people had been displaced in north-eastern Luzon but no casualties had been reported so far.

“Initially, we are getting [reports that] many houses were destroyed, power lines toppled and trees blocking major roads,” he said.Typhoon Koppu Philippines

The eye of the storm was moving west at a speed of just 2mph.

“It has slowed almost to a crawl. We were hoping it would speed up and spare us sooner,” Alexander Pama added.

Flights and ferry services in the north have been cancelled and some bus services in mountain areas suspended due to the threat of landslides.

On October 16, President Benigno Aquino made a televised warning, the first time he had done so since Super Typhoon Haiyan in 2013, which killed more than 6,300 people.

Typhoon Koppu, also known as Lando, is up to 400 miles across and producing winds of up to 155mph. It is slow moving, meaning it could bring intense rain over a long period of time.

Rain has also reached the capital Manila, though winds are not expected to be strong enough there to cause damage.

In his TV address, President Benigno Aquino urged the estimated six million people in the typhoon’s direct path to listen to government warnings and be ready to evacuate their homes if necessary.

He said aid agencies had already distributed emergency supplies to evacuation centers.

Meanwhile, the Philippine military in northern Luzon has been placed on alert for disaster operations.

Typhoon Koppu is not due to leave the Philippines until October 20, when it will be heading towards Taiwan.

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