Floods submerge most of Philippine capital
Tens of thousands of people are being evacuated from the capital of the Philippines as floods devastate the city.
About 80 per cent of Manila, a sprawling metropolis of about 12 million people, remained inundated on Wednesday, Benito Ramos, head of the national disaster agency, told Reuters news agency.
“The roads in some areas are like rivers. People have to use boats to move around. All the roads and alleys are flooded,” Ramos told AFP news agency.
Emergency workers and troops have rushed food, water and clothes to nearly 800,000 people displaced and marooned from deadly floods spawned by more than a week of southwest monsoon rains that soaked the Philippine capital and nearby provinces.
“We’re still on a rescue mode. Floods are receding in many areas but people are still trapped on their roofs,” Ramos said.
Financial markets reopened after being shut on Tuesday, but schools and many businesses remained shut for a second straight day with the military, police and civic officials struggling to deliver aid.
Still, many people were reluctant to leave flooded homes, fearing a loss of valuables, officials said.
“We’re also asking people living along swollen riverbanks to evacuate,” Ramos said. “If there is a need for us to force them to leave their homes, we will do that for their own safety.”
The death toll in Manila and nearby provinces stood at 15, including nine members of one family who died in a landslide.